Category Archives: Tech Stuff

The transaction log for database ‘VIM_VCDB’ is full. To find out why space in the log cannot be reused, see the log_reuse_wait_desc column in sys.databases

Recently I have gotten this error on a couple of vCenter servers I manage, due to them using SQL Express installs for the VCDB and then having a large number of deletes occur on events & tasks. The reason for the message is that by default the SQL express DB log file is limited to 500MB and the deletes fill the log up. Now all the “fixes” I’ve found by searching for the error in the title simply say “change the limit” so it doesn’t fill up. Which I don’t really like as a fix as it’s a workaround, especially as the log file on one of the servers had to grow to around 15GB, which is insane for a 2GB DB.

Instead I started looking for a way to get this back under control and in the end I had to search for the database being full, which lead me to http://bohemiangrove.co.uk/vmware-vcenter-server-5-5-database-is-full/

Now most of the article was irrelevant to me as I had already performed the tasks purging the DB of old events. However, there is a command at the end of the article:

dbcc shrinkdatabase ( VIM VCDB , 5 )

Now I’m not a SQL admin so I don’t know what sort of affects this might have on the DB (negative or otherwise) but after backing up the DB I ran the command and the DB & Log file both shrank and haven’t grown massively since.

TeamViewer on Converted VM

I installed an SSD into my home ESXi host and wanted to migrate my Windows Home Server onto the SSD. As the SSD was quite small, I had to use VMware Converter to “Convert” the VM to another VM with a reduced disk size.

Afterwards, TeamViewer would not connect if I wasn’t logged into the machine (either via the console or RDP). Every time I tried to connect I got a “WaitforConnectFailed” error. Uninstalling and reinstalling TeamViewer was of no help.

As part of the VM conversion process, VMware Converter strips out the network card and installs a new one. This meant that TeamViewer was somehow binding to the old “hidden” network card which would obviously not connect. Using the instructions in the following article (the instructions work with all versions of Windows from XP upwards), I removed the non-present NIC and voilรก, it now works as it should. A fairly unique situation, but one I thought was worth documenting.

DayZ Epoch – Dedicated server reboot

So I’ve recently set up a private dedicated server for DayZ Epoch for myself and a few friends. Because we only have a fairly limited time of day that we can play at (what with working and all), I’m only really concerned with rebooting the server once a week.

The server OS does an auto reboot every week, at 3:45 AM, then to allow any patches to finish installing/configuring, I wait 15 minutes before triggering an ArmA II start at 4:00 AM. The batch file I use is:

@echo off
cd /d E:\DayZ_Epoch_Server
start “” “DayZ_Epoch_instance_11_Chernarus.bat”
taskkill /f /im cmd.exe
@exit

This is called by the Task Scheduler at 4:00 AM which then runs the default bat file, which if you call directly fails.

Uninstall software via Powershell script

I’ve been trying to uninstall a large amount of unwanted software off the network. After a great deal of reading, I have the following as a powershell script. The script is pretty easy to modify/add to if required, you can just put whatever you want at the end of the script, specifying a different variable for each unique piece of software. It isn’t foolproof, as it relies on the software installing with an MSI file so Google Chrome for example, installs to a unique location (C:\Program Files\Google\Chrome\Application\%Version Number%\Installer\Setup.exe) and can’t be uninstalled this way.

The powershell script is called with a computer startup script which has the following in it:

—CODE START—

powershell -executionpolicy bypass -file \\Server-Name\Share-Name\Script-Name.ps1

—CODE END—

The PS1 script then has the following:

—CODE START—

#Run Powershell as Admin

function Set-Elevation
{
# Create a new process object that starts PowerShell
$newProcess = New-Object System.Diagnostics.ProcessStartInfo “powershell”;
# Indicate that the process should be elevated
$newProcess.Verb = “runas”;
# Start the new process
[System.Diagnostics.Process]::Start($newProcess) | Out-Null
}

# Uninstall MS Bing Bar
$Bingbar = Get-WmiObject -Class win32_product -Filter “Name = ‘Bing Bar'”
msiexec /x $Bingbar.localPackage /qn /norestart

# Uninstall Google Earth
$GoogleEarth = Get-WmiObject -Class win32_product -Filter “Name = ‘Google Earth'”
msiexec /x $GoogleEarth.localPackage /qn /norestart

—CODE END—

When I work out how to uninstall Chrome etc. easily, I’ll post again.

Title

On Tuesday morning, at about 3.15AM, I had a phone call from the out of hours service that there was an issue with one of our systems. After fumbling around for a half hour I worked out that I was not going to be able to fix the issue remotely and would have to go on-site to fix.

Unfortunately when I got onto site, it was discovered that one of the HP MSA arrays that is connected into part of our vSphere 4 environment had lost all power. Because of the half-arsed way that the consultancy company set it up (a process I was not involved with!) it took out the other enclosure with it.

Anyway, once power had been restored to the system, the vDisks were showing as offline and no amount of rebooting (at HP’s request) would bring them back online. Eventually the case was escalated to their level 2 team and I was asked to do the following:

  • Disconnect (or power off) all hosts connected to the MSAs
  • Telnet to the MSA that had lost power.
  • Enter the command: trust enable
  • Enter the command: trust vdisk vdiskname
  • Wait for a minimum of 3 minutes.
  • Enter the command: show vdisks

The disk with the name vdiskname should then appear as FTOL, and if not the commands above should be run a second time. This then needs to be run for all vDisks that have been set up on the MSA. I was told by HP to only run these commands when advised by HP, but I thought they may prove useful to someone somewhere.

 

And yes, I’m very pissed off with the consultants that set it up!!!

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So, after (just) over a week in Dehli, I am now VMWare Certified. Today, I took the VCP-410 exam, and passed by quite a margin (thankfully!). Its not an easy exam, by doing the practice exams and all the revision, it should be easy enough for someone who uses vSphere on a day-to-day basis. Now I have to take what I’ve learned back to the job and look at the VM’s running in our environment. I’ve already had a look remotely and can see that there are some issues and things to be fixed. I will update as I discover more.

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If you’ve installed the iSCSI target on Windows Server 2003 and it crashes the console when you try to use the main devices view, uninstall KB973507.

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I had an issue this morning where a user was getting a NETLOGON window appearing everytime they logged onto the domain. Turns out this is caused by having just a space in the logon scripts field in their AD account. Deleting the space stops it appearing.

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I realise today that I forgot to update y’all on my Xbox. Turn around was about 3 weeks, which included the Christmas holidays, so not too bad overall. It sat in the UPS depot for about a week before it was delivered to Microsoft, as it arrived in the depot on Christmas Eve. Still I have it back, although there is a little wierd thing going on with Lips (the game that was in the machine when it went tits-up). The other games seem ok though.

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So, after only 16 months my Xbox 360 Elite has been hit by the Red Ring Of Death. Nevermind, its been submitted for repair and I’m awaiting the confirmation email from Microsoft…

[Edit] Well, I have the confirmation email from Microsoft (it arrived about a couple of hours after I submitted the request) and the package label from UPS. Now I can take the boxed up 360 to my local UPS office Tuesday…