VMWare released “Photon” earlier this week, which is a lightweight Linux OS for hosting Docker containers. It’s amazingly slim like CoreOS and deploys in a matter of seconds. I gave it a spin today and it worked pretty well. Installing it on vSphere was pretty straightforward following documentation on the Photon GitHub site. Once it was installed, I needed to make a few changes to get it working smoothly.
Setting the proxy
If your environment uses a proxy to connect to the internet, continue with this section. If not, skip.
First, create a new directory to store the extra configuration.
Next, create a http-proxy.conf file in the directory and edit it.
We’ve switched SMS providers at work to Nexmo, however they don’t have a SMTP API. I whipped up a quick EWS script to monitor a mailbox for emails in the correct format and to send SMS’ based off it. Script below.
The script should be run as the user whos mailbox will be monitored (ours is set up as a scheduled task). Next, it should have to subfolders called “Error” and “Processed”. Successful emails get marked as read and send to “Processed”, and unsuccessful emails get kept as unread and moved to “Error”. Because we send from some systems that don’t have SMTP authentication, there is a field called “Secret” that should be defined at the top of the PowerShell script and put in each email.
The format for the email is:
To: number in international format (ie. +61404040404)
This isn’t really documented anywhere on the VMware website, but it comes in really handy if require certain users to have console access to machines without the complication of the vSphere Web Client.
Give the user access to the VM. The permission “Virtual Machine\Interaction\Console Interation” needs to be given on both the VM and the host. It doesn’t need to inherit to children so deselect “Propagate to children” in the permisisons screen”.
Create a shortcut to connect straight to the VM. The following PowerShell script can create the shortcut automatically.
Powershell Desired State Configuration (DSC) is relatively new but wow, it is so powerful! I’ve had troubles getting Pydio up and running in the past, so I created a consistent configuration file to get it working.
Simply save the file as pydio.ps1 and run it on the target server. Make sure to download the prerequisite files (PHP, VC++ 2012 Redistributable, PHP Manager for IIS) and put them in an accessible location.
The iLO interface on one of our servers complete broke and we had no way of accessing it, and it wasn’t updating through the HP SPP media. Fortunately I was able to update it through SSH.
However, because the firmware on the iLO interface was so old, it needed to be upgraded to an earlier version first before updating to the latest. This is documented on the HP Support Centre.
Download a iLO3 1.2x firmware. It will come with the filename ilo3_12x.bin, with x being the minor version number. Upload the file to a web server that can be accessed by the iLO interface. Now, open a SSH session and connect to the iLO IP address. Run the following commands, replacing webserver with your web server FQDN/IP and the filename with the file you downloaded:
load -source http://webserver/ilo3_12x.bin
The iLO will now update and reboot, disconnecting you from SSH in the process. Once it’s back up, it will be upgraded and ready for the final upgrade through the HP SPP.