Monday, May 25, 2009

VMWARE Project:

We are about to start a vmware project to completely separate vmware environment from all others. I want to note the time line and accomplishments of the project. We are looking at a possible server addition with disk. Once the project is approved I will start to post what's going on along with pictures from the project.

Current environment:
4 VM hosts with a 1 host lab server, and 3 hosts clustered servers.
Cluster consists of DRS, HA, VMOTION, and is currently attached to a SAN.
Currently 53 vm servers in the environment.

Possible SAN solutions for the new storage.
NetApp FAS3100 Series:
Very Powerful and feature packed
Very Good NAS Solution close to FC

Very Powerful with lots of I/O
Writes to large cache for better performance
Great SAN via Fiber Channel solution
Fiber Channel attached disks
Brocade FC Switches provide path redundancy
and fail over.

More to come:

Sunday, March 29, 2009

I passed the CCNA on my first try, 3 hours of studying every night for a month and a half paid off. Some of you may be wanting my Brain Dump, but I did sign an agreement stating I would not disclaim exact questions from the exam. What I can tell everyone is that you must know your ACL's, NAT, and subnetting. I was asked a hand full of router summerization questions, and also was required to do a NAT lab. While studying I did every NAT possible as many times as possible to the point I could do all my nat commands without using a ? during the command execution. I did the same thing on the test, and had my NAT lab done in about 30 seconds. ACLs where basicacly look at ACL's and come up with solutions to problems, and explain how adjust ACL's in order to solve those issues. There was a hand full of wifi questions also, and some frame relay. The truth is you need to get a book to study, I used the Sybex book for the 640-802 by Todd lammle, and I also got the CCNA flash cards. I highly recommend the flash cards, because it comes with a good test engine that is included with it. Some of the questions in the test eingine have incorrect answers, so if you get a question wrong that you thought was right, go research it. I would also say any question that you get right off of a good guess, go research it. For the CCNA you need to really know and understand everything, no guessing just knowing.

Good luck to anyone who is looking to take the Cisco 640-802 CCNA exam.

Friday, February 27, 2009

I am now getting ready for yet another exam and cert. I have gone as far as I can go with the linux certs, so I am switching over to the cisco certs. I will be starting with the CCNA which I am about to schedule for soon. I have read the entire todd lammle book for the CCNA, yes all 870 pages of it. I am doing a two week study cram with labs and exam sims to prepare for this test. If I pass, I plan on diving into the CCNP right away.

Here are my current certs.

CNA = Certified Novell Administrator
LTS = Linux Technical Specialist
CLA10 = Certified Linux Administrator
CLP9 = Certified Linux Professional "SLES9"
CLP10 = Certified Linux Professional "SLES10"
NCA-AS = Novell Certified Administrator - Enterprise Services on SLES10
NCA-ES = Novell Certified Engineer - Enterprise Services on SLES10
CLE10 = Certified Linux Engineer "SLES10"

My goals for the remainder of the year are the following:
CCNA = Cisco Certified Network Associate
VCP = VMWare Certified Professional
CCNP = Cisco Certified Network Professional
CCVA = Cisco Certified Voice Associate

If I can get two of my goals done for the end of the year I would be happy. The cisco certification exams appear to cover a lot of the fine detail that we as engineers or administrators tend to forget about. We know that large networks should be seperated with VLANS, and we know how to do this, but cisco wants to know if you know what the packet that goes between the switches has tagged on it before being delivered to the destination address when using a VLAN. What type of User ID is on that packet and when is it removed? The Linux certification exams that I took where all about putting your skills to the test and making things happen. Walking into a Lab and given a lab manuel saying make sure these 24 tasks are complete in 4 hours, and then doing it. No questions to answer, just show that you can apply what you know to real world scenerios.

Saturday, November 01, 2008

I have been playing with Asterisk for a few weeks now, and had the worse time trying to get the meetme conference rooms to work. I read all over the internet with many people having the same issue and no where could I find a solution. The error that we see when watching asterisk using the asterisk -r command to connect to the asterisk server remote console follows like so when someone attempts to dail the conference. No application found "meetme". So what does this mean? This means that when Asterisk was compiled that the MeetMe application was not compiled at that time, and the reason that is would be because your system didn't meat the requirements in order to install meetme during the compile process. The easy way to figure this out is to run configure, once you have ran configure you should run "make menuselect" you may press enter to go into the applications that are to be installed while compiling. Anything with a [*] is going to be installed during compiling because your system has all the dependencies required. If you see XXX next to an application that means that you do not meet the minimum requirements. Highlighting the app will also tell you what you need in order to add the application. When I highlighted MeetMe, it said that I needed dahdi to be installed before I installed asterisk. DAHDI is the new zaptel, in Asterisk version 1.6 you will need DAHDI, not zaptel. I installed zaptel, so I could not get the meetme conference installed since dahdi was the dependency. I download dahdi from Make sure you compile this before asterisk. One more thing to add is make sure you get the init script working, because you will need to start dahdi also. I am running Asterisk on OpenSuSE11, in order to get the /etc/init.d/dahdi script to work, I had to edit this script. I replaced redhat with suse everywhere in the script, I also removed the first function for finding the function library. I also had to replace action with echo everywhere in the script. Once all that is done and you can start dahdi, go back to your asterisk download and run "make menuselect" again, you should see that meetme is now included as an application. Compile or recompile asterisk. As long as dahdi is running, you should be able to use the meetme conference numbers. I hope this helps, if not please reply to this post and I will answer any questions that come up.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

VMWORLD 2008 Las Vegas;

This was a fantastic conference, almost as good as Novell Brain Share.  The only problem was that it was way over crowded, although the sessions where outstanding.  The conference was held in the Venetian in a 5 story conference hall, with a huge vendor area, and extra large key note hall.  What I did not do was attend the conference party, which from what I hear was a real fun time.  First thing is that VMWare was really selling SLES10sp2 as the best OS to run on ESX host.  This is because of the Paravirtualized kernel that Novell has included in SLES10sp2.  I must have attended 5 sessions where the instructors mentioned SuSE as the best OS to be virtualized.  One other thing mentioned was Novells acquisition of Plate Spin, a virtualization management engine.  Plate spin has a few products and the ones that VMWare made sure we knew about was Power Recon and Power Convert.  I am currently demoing power convert, and it seems to do it's job very well.  Power Recon will take a look at your virtual environment, and then take a look at machines you wish to virtualized over a specified period of time to let you know not only if your virtual environment can handle the P2V workload, but also includes your savings in power and AC, very cool.  Power convert handles migrations of workloads from P2v, P2P, V2P, and V2V.  The nice thing about this, is that it works with Linux and Windows and does not require Active Directory.  The main thing I was looking for at vmworld where products that did all the cool stuff, that could integrate with LDAP and not require AD.  So what did I do at VMWORLD 2008.

Sunday: Arrived in Vegas, checked in to the Hotel, Meet up with my buddy Jack, his wife, and jacks boss.  Jacks boss whos name I shall not mention due to national security reasons was a very technical old school directory who new his stuff so well, you had to keep on your toes around him.  Lots of knowledge with a great outlook on the past to the present, and a great vision for the future.  It was very good to see Jack as this was the first time I got to see him in almost 3 years, he still looks as cute as he did 3 years ago.

Monday: Registration at 8am, no breakfast, no lunch.  Today is only for LAB's, no sessions.  There was a small vendor party at 4:30pm where the vendors opened the booths for the first time and served all sorts of junk food and soda.  Monday night was not a complete wash because I was able to spend a bit of time with my family that I brought with me.

Tuesday:  Sessions begin, I did three sessions on Tuesday and learned a lot.  On the way to the conference I was handed free poker chips from Microsoft.  Those poker chips where attached to some card that I threw away.  I wonder what was on the card?  I spent the majority of my time in the vendor area, making contacts and calling Jack on his cell phone to bug him.  Jack filled his schedule up with useless classes and spent no time in the vendor area.  Tonight we all went to a small vendor party in a suit at the Venetian.  Free beer and free food.  Only problem is that I went to a buffet after the conference with a co-worker.  We went to the buffet at the Wynn, very awsome, very expensive.  You have to pay before you are seated, and you are also expected to your tip down.  What I did not like is that they wrote the amount you tipped on your ticket that you gave to the seater.  I think this set you up for seating and the service you would receive for the rest of the night.  We didn't tip great because it's a buffet, and I find it hard to tip when I don't know how the service or food is yet.

Wednesday:  More sessions, more vendor area, more Jack wasting his time in sessions and more me out getting free gear from the vendors.  I meet up with Jack and his wife, plus Avy to head off to the conference party.  When you see 17,000 people trying to load onto buses to go to a party, well it turns you off wanting to go.  We all decided to go out for a nice dinner and have a night on the strip.  Avy missed the gym so much he decided to use the treadmill at Baileys, I'm not sure but the treadmill looked a lot like a walkway to the casino.  In Avy's defence moving walkway or not he did get a workout at Baily's even if people walking past him thought he was drunk.  Before we went for our workout we had a good time at the Paris hotel drinking pina colada from what looked like a giant penis, descised as a ifle tower.  I don't know but long, hard, and full of white stuff fits the description of a penis if you ask me.

Thursday:  Final day of the conference, where I actually attended more sessions and learned lots about linux on VM.  Jack finally broke away from classes around 3pm, but we only had an hour and a half to run through the vendors to get free stuff.  The experience was a blast and I was so sad to say goodbye to Jack.  I think I may be going to Brain Share this year since VMWORLD 2009 is in San Fransisco.  Next time it's in Vegas I am there.

I stayed until Friday morning and we had a nice flight home.  I brought back many free t-shirts and a lot gained knowledge on ESX and host performance.  Make sure if you get a chance, go to a conference, they are a lot of fun.

Next time you are out, and it's cold out.  Ask yourself "Jackit On, or Jackit Off"?