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Vcenter upgrade and VSC5.0 Wintel compatibilty and migration approach

I currently have an environment containing 17 ESXi 4.1 hosts being managed by VC 4.1. The old VC physical server is to be decommed and a new one installed along with several additional ESXi 5.5. servers to increase capacity, allow for 2012, Solaris 11 etc. Storage is Netapp on NFS where SAN connected and includes seperate vfilers for separate security contexts, current VSC version is 2.1

We are implementing a new VMware cluster with a new vCenter server.

We are running NFS as the protocol and have a mixture of guest VM’s to backup from W2000-2012 and a few Linux and Solaris VM’s too.

The vCenter Server 5.5 software is installed on a 2012 Standard server. When we install VSC 4.2.1 everything seems to work accept the backup and restore section. We we go there the following error occurs:

 

error 503 problem accessing /smvi/gwtrpc service unavailable

 

The Backup and Recovery component appears to have some dependencies on the Windows OS version and it appears that VSC 4.2.1 does not support Windows 2012... specifically, the Backup and Recovery component !!

I suppose I could install the VSC onto a separate (physical) Windows 2008 R2 server (a management server probably) instead of onto the Win2012 vCenter server or alternatively VSC 5.0 will support Windows 2012,  but when one of our storage team guys (who has since left)  looked at the versions previously there were some concerns over compatibility with legacy OS’s notably w2000 servers and in the release notes it states

 

New features
 

VSC 5.0 is a major change that includes a new look and seamless integration with the VMware vSphere Web Client. New features in this release include support for the following:

  • The VMware vSphere Web Client
  • VASA Provider for clustered Data ONTAP®
  • SnapVault integration as a backup job option for clustered Data ONTAP
  • Adding a virtual machine or datastore to an existing backup job
  • Numerous bug fixes
VSC 5.0 discontinues support for the following:
  • vCenter 5.1 and earlier
  • VMware Desktop client
  • 32-bit Windows installations
  • mbralign
  • Single File Restore
  • Datastore Remote Replication
  • Flash Accel

 

although from looking at the Netapp Interoperability Tool

 

http://mysupport.netapp.com/matrix/mtx/login.do;jsessionid=F6D84E204C1267A3283845F9CC409570?

 

I believe that this was due to the fact that you can not run VSC5.0 on a W2000 OS and not the fact that VSC would not be able backup a W2000 VM ( as this is still supported inside the vCenter version we are running  you would assume this is not a problem ?)

Question1.

Can anyone confirm that they have used the VSC5.0 version to backup legacy W2000 VM’s without issue. ?

 

Question 2.

It is crucial that we don't lose any backups (or have them orphaned) and if possible I want to avoid having to create a new baseline so therefore intend to move the .xml file containing the backup jobs from the old VSC2.x and put this onto the new instance, this was believed to be functional under VSC4.2.1 but would need to be tested

 

Using the approach below does anyone know of any problems/gotchas etc and will this solution work while preserving all backups ??

 

The following steps must be taken to protect SMVI when installed on local disk:

• Backup the following two directories

• %PROGRAMFILES%\NetApp\SMVI\Server\repository\

• %PROGRAMFILES%\NetApp\SMVI\Server\etc

• In the event of failure of the SMVI server, install SMVI on a replacement system.

• Stop the SMVI service

• Copy the backed-up files listed in step 1 to their original location.

• Restart the SMVI service within Windows.

• Start the SMVI GUI and enter “Setup’”.

• Enter the vCenter server name or IP address.

• Enter the necessary storage information

• Select “Restore” from within the SMVI GUI.

 

 

Backup jobs will be listed and scheduled jobs will run successfully. (this would need to be tested) Alternatively I'll need to rebaseline

 

https://communities.netapp.com/thread/32680

 

Has anyone tried this and does it work with ?

 

My assumption would be that as long at the

%PROGRAMFILES%\NetApp\SMVI\Server\repository\

• %PROGRAMFILES%\NetApp\SMVI\Server\etc

 

directory structure is the same when VSC5.0 is installed this should be OK. Can anyone confirm ?