Data Protection & High Availibility – upcoming new features – Part 2

Microsoft announced different cool features at the TechEd 2014 in Barcelona and I needed some time to get into all the cool new stuff.
Especially the tracks of Data Protection and High Availability got me.
There are major and minor changes with Hyper-V, Data Protection Manager and Azure which makes life easier and HA/DP better.

Here’s a series of conclusions of the changes and new features from all over different sessions.

2. A new Reporting Framework

Another missed thing, is an accurate and reliable reporting feature.
At the moment DPM doesn’t have good reports especially for environments with more than one DPM server.
The reporting engine is only usable for one single server for example.
I’m sure you really desperate to get something better.

Continue reading

Linux on Hyper-V – a summary 10.2014

I struggled with a Live Backup issue on Ubuntu 2014 LTS a while ago as ralish from Stockholm DevOps describes here.
The problem was a broken installer meta package and ends up in a missing kvp deamon if you tried to install it on Ubuntu.
This daemon is used to interact between Host and VM to get a consistent backup state during snapshot creation on the Hyper-V Host.
So at the end, Backups without kvp can be risky due to a service interruption of the VM workload(s).

A screenshot from the DPM 2012 R2 Backup console shows the offline state.

In the meantime, the bug got fixed, Live Backups without service interruption can be taken, the sun is shining again and so it’s time to wrap some things up and give you a short overview about Hyper-V and common Linux Distributions.

Continue reading

Increasing Deduplication Performance on Server 2012/R2 … a bit

Updated 02.02..2015

It’s been a while since the dedup feature came to us with Server 2012.
Actually 2 years ago I started playing around and since then it’s one of my favourite features.
For testing purposes I have had deduped nearly everything I could and still use it in “unsupported” scenarios like non VDI environments.
I got quite an overview how rock solid this feature really is.

Continue reading

Deduplication Error – 0x8007000E – Server 2012/R2

Server 2012 R2 fantaboulous dedup feature is one of my favourites.
But I had a mysterious error within the logs about “Not enough storage” which was definitely not true.

At the end the error message is misleading and it was to less memory at night times when the server tried to dedup his storage due to a rare condition with concurrent other VMs and dynamic ram. So it happend not often and the errors weren’t in my sight.

The Power Shell gave me this:

LastOptimizationTime : 24.06.2014 01:26:49
LastOptimizationResult : 0x8007000E
LastOptimizationResultMessage : Not enough storage is available to complete this operation.

Getting more minimum memory and scaling up the weight solved the problem.

Continue reading

KB2920189 fails to install on generation 2 Hyper-V VMs

A couple of days ago (12.05.2014) there was an updates released which fixing UEFI issues on Windows Server 2012/Windows 8 and above.
On some machines the update will fail as described here.
But as suggested within the forum it seems to be working to disable “secure boot” and repeat the update run.
In my cases all machines could install and run properly.

vPro/AMT and Direct Access issue

On my testing lab I ran into a problem as I tried to get vPro access remotely via Direct Access based on Server 2012 R2.
It turned out that there is a problem if I used the virtual network of the Direct Access Server on the same port as the built in network port.

What happend?

I couldn’t get access to the vPro interface on the Hyper-V Host where the DA Server is running as virtual machine.
Reasearching the problem I could see If I’m switching to another vNet on an other port on the same Host the vpro webinterface appears.

In best practise the Host System shouldn’t communicate during the same network port as the virtual machines anyway but with limited ressources I ignored that.
The vPro/AMT Stuff works on a shared base with the first network port on Intels Q Chipsets.
I could reproduce this with a Q77M chip and Intel 82579LM and a Q87M with I217LM as well.

Some smaller or older servers have these kind of shared remote ports as well but in most cases the remote port is independent (HPs iLO is mostly a 100Mbit port for example).

Server 2012 R2 – my personal favourite features

The Preview is still out there and the first impressions were made.
Since R2 hits the TechNet i’m on my way to explore more and more stuff I really like.

  • Tiered Storage Spaces
  • incredible fast (Windows) updates
  • dedup for CSVs
  • shared virtual disks (makes it a lot easier to build Cluster in a Cluster Environments –> guest clustering)
  • online VHDX resizing (Gen2 only)

But there are some Points missing.

A graphical view of hot spots on dedup’d File Servers or something to see what kind of data can dedup’d pretty well and what kind doesn’t.
Quick upgrade/migrations paths for existing Gen1 Hyper-V machines to Gen2.

 

Server 2012 R2 Preview – Installation error

Especially during in place upgrades I ran several times into installation errors.

“Windows installation encountered an unkown error and cannot continue.”

The reason at the moment seems to be the (177kb) update the setup assistant is recommending.
If you leave the option unchecked the installation will run through.

1.2012-to-R2-error 2.2012-to-R2-error 3.2012-to-R2-error 4.2012-to-R2-error

I ran also into errors during a normal setup on a blank disc with the same error but couldn’t get a hint why.
Maybe it was a corrupt iso image.