Thursday, 17 January 2013

PVS 6.1 with VMWare vSphere

I see so many cases involving PVS and VMWare it'd make you feel like there are no other hypervisor options out there :-) Seriously though I do like VMWare for a variety of reasons, none the least the ability to dump PVS targets at will for analysis. Anyway this post deals with the compatibility issues I see almost on a daily basis. Some customers listen and take our advise that you must be set up correctly for an easy implementation....  some like to take the hard road.

Let me state this from the start. If you break any of the rules below you are in for a painful implementation:

  1. If you are using ESXi 5.0 you will need update 1. VMWare themselves have requested it.
  2. If you are using ESXi 5.1... well you cant for now according to Citrix its not supported
  3. If again you are using ESXi 5.0 you must not use E1000 Nics on the PVS Servers nor on the targets. This CTX article says the same. Your Targets will not work correctly and will be hanging, slow and you will never get them working  correctly.
  4. Check out again. Look to the section on Interrupt safe mode and implement it.
  5. You are going to need to look at the following MS kb article and make sure you install this hotfix on your master target. Otherwise you will see a bluescreen - "0x0000007B" Stop error - when booting the target
    1. Another point on this hotfix is that Microsoft does not always download you the correct version of the fix automatically. If you get a message saying the fix cannot install double check the version you have. Also ensure the Windows Update service is running on the Target.
  6. All PVS related nics should be device 0 in the network list. Do not add your production NIC as nic0 and the streaming as nic1 it'll just cause troubles.
  7. For PVS is goes without saying that your targets should be caching to HD's locally attached to the VM's and not back to the PVS servers as this will not allow HA to work.
  8. If a WriteCache drive is in use, ensure that the drive occupies position 0:1 in the VM settings and not position 0:0.  If a drive exists in position 0:1 the VM will have issues booting up
From here on if you see slowness issues or hanging you will need the PVS logs on debug level and it may be time to look at some wireshark traffic. More to follow.....


  1. Hi Ross,
    Could you be a good lad and do the same for XS 6.1,PVS 6.1 and XD 5.6? A customer has this implemented so they can use LACP. Stack as noted is unsupported according documentation ;-)

    1. Arti,
      All should be well in the world of XS6.1 now that the below important updates have been released. I'll put together an article but for now check these out, and expect the "unsupported" KB to be updated to Supported soon :-)