Windows 10 – AppX Removal Script Update

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AppX Removal Script Update

Hey welcome to my blog and Happy 2018!  Some of you may remember I did an article last year about AppX apps and how they can break Sysprep.  I explained how I ran into the issue and then I went a little further than that and provided a couple scripts to help remove the AppX packages and to remove provisioning of those apps so they don’t install under other accounts.  Surprisingly it’s one of the more popular articles on here.

During my day job I’m constantly working with images for VDI deployments and I’m finding additional apps to remove and new ways to view and sort through them all.  I wanted to detail those as an addition to my previous article.  I also wanted to talk through how most people end up breaking Sysprep and how to avoid doing so altogether. Continue reading

vSphere 6.5 U1 Upgrade Series – ESXi Host Upgrade

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vSphere 6.5 U1 Upgrade

Welcome to my blog and thanks for checking it out.  As the title implies I’ll be stepping you through upgrading an existing vSphere 6.5 GA or above environment to vSphere 6.5 U1.  The process is incredibly simple depending on how many hosts you have it doesn’t take that much time at all.   This will be broken into three articles, one for the PSC upgrade, one for the vCenter upgrade and one to demonstrate using Update Manager to upgrade hosts.  If you haven’t upgraded to vSphere 6.5 yet check out my vSphere 6.5 Series.

ESXi Host Upgrade

In the previous article we stepped through upgrading the vCenter VCSA appliance.  It almost didn’t need to be a separate article since the steps are nearly identical to the PSC VCSA upgrade but since it is a different component I felt it was necessary.   Either way now that we have both management components upgraded it’s time to upgrade the ESXi hosts.  As of vSphere 6.5 GA, Update Manager is now available on the vCenter VCSA.  This is a pretty important step for VMware since they’ve stated that the next iteration of vSphere will not be deployable on Windows.  It will be VCSA only for the vCenter and PSC.  This is also an important step for customers wanting to migrate to the VCSA and rid themselves of the dependence on Windows.

This is the last step in upgrading our environment and arguably the most important.  It’s also typically the easiest part of the process.  We’ll use Update Manager to attach a baseline to each host.  We’ll scan each host for compliance against the baseline.  Finally, we’ll remediate each host, installing all the applicable patches, bugfixes and updates. Continue reading

vSphere 6.5 U1 Upgrade Series – vCenter VCSA Upgrade

vSphere 6.5 U1 Upgrade

Welcome to my blog and thanks for checking it out.  As the title implies I’ll be stepping you through upgrading an existing vSphere 6.5 GA or above environment to vSphere 6.5 U1.  The process is incredibly simple depending on how many hosts you have it doesn’t take that much time at all.   This will be broken into three articles, one for the PSC upgrade, one for the vCenter upgrade and one to demonstrate using Update Manager to upgrade hosts.  If you haven’t upgraded to vSphere 6.5 yet check out my vSphere 6.5 Series.

vCenter VCSA Upgrade

In the previous article we stepped through upgrading the Platform Services Controller VCSA appliance.  As you may have read it’s a very simple undertaking.  VMware has really streamlined the upgrade process with the VCSA appliance.  The vCenter VCSA upgrade to Update 1 isn’t much different so you will see quite a few redundant steps here.  The vCenter VCSA appliance and the PSC VCSA are both deployed from the same ISO.  Both built on VMware’s Photon OS, an open source Linux variant built by VMware.  Previous iterations of the VCSA were built on SLES.  Being on the same OS means the upgrade process is nearly identical. Continue reading

vSphere 6.5 U1 Upgrade Series – PSC VCSA Upgrade

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vSphere 6.5 U1 Upgrade

Welcome to my blog and thanks for checking it out.  As the title implies I’ll be stepping you through upgrading an existing vSphere 6.5 GA or above environment to vSphere 6.5 U1.  The process is incredibly simple depending on how many hosts you have it doesn’t take that much time at all.   This will be broken into three articles, one for the PSC upgrade, one for the vCenter upgrade and one to demonstrate using Update Manager to upgrade hosts.  If you haven’t upgraded to vSphere 6.5 yet check out my vSphere 6.5 Series.

PSC VCSA Upgrade

We’ve been using vSphere 6.5 for a while now and it’s really good.  It’s taken some getting used to switching to the HTML5 or the Flash Web Client.  Really a combination of both for me.  The Flash client unfortunately still has Update Manager and many other advanced features all to itself so we still have to use it.  Thankfully not daily if you’re the typical administrator though.    Up until now there have been several minor patches but now we have the first major update of course called vSphere 6.5 Update 1 (U1). Continue reading

VMworld 2017 – Tuesday

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VMworld 2017

Tuesday is always the busiest day of the week.  The sessions and events are stacked.  I happened to attend a session early in the day and it was easily one of the best sessions of the show.  Some of the sessions tend to be more marketing focused and so this was a real treat.  The What’s Next for vSphere session had so many feature reveals and tech previews.

VMworld 2017 - Tuesday

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Who’s going to VMworld 2017?

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Who's going to VMworld 2017?

VMworld

It is upon us once again.  A veritable nerdtopia of cool technology and smart people.  It’s a marathon of breakouts, labs, sessions, networking with peers and events.  For the uninitiated VMworld is VMware’s annual conference showcasing the latest technologies and products for the now Dell owned company.  It is also a hell of a lot of fun if you’re into these sorts of things.

VMworld 2017 is being held in Las Vegas for the 2nd year in a row at the Mandalay Bay Hotel & Casino.  Historically VMworld has been held in Los Angeles, San Diego, San Francisco and Las Vegas.  For more general information check out the website and the wiki.  I’m of course attending this year and it will be my 3rd VMworld in a row.  For fun I’ll quickly run you through the last 2 conferences. Continue reading

VMware vSphere 6.5 Series (Part 6) – VCSA vCenter Configuration

VMware vSphere 6.5 Series

This is my first attempt at a series and I decided to make it about vSphere 6.5.  I’ll be covering as many new components and features of vSphere 6.5 as possible here so sit back and enjoy!

VCSA vCenter Configuration

In the last article we went through deploying the VCSA vCenter Server through the installer.  We deployed the VCSA appliance on Stage 1 and then configured some of the basic settings for it on Stage 2.  We’re at the last article in the series and so far we’ve configured ESXI using the vSphere Host Client, deployed and configured the VCSA Platform Services Controller and deployed the VCSA vCenter Server.  We’re going to finish up by configuring vCenter and adding licensing, creating a datacenter, creating a cluster, adding hosts, applying licensing and finally we’ll enable HA and DRS. Continue reading