The new SSD had arrived so it was time for our second trip
to the datacenter. Armed with an external USB backup drive and the new SSD we
went on our way.
As we had setup the MrBlonde VM with so called “thin
provisioning” we thought it would be a quick process to make a backup from the
VM. After all 100GB was provisioned for that VM, but only 20 or 30GB was
actually used. Turns out when you want to create a backup from a thin
provisioned VM, it would still download the full 100GB. The trip was already
going to take longer than expected…
First thing we did was staring the backup of the MrBlonde VM
to the external HDD, so in the meantime we could start rebuilding the hardware
As we require more hard drive space in MrBlonde to be able to
fully backup MrWhite (MrWhite previously had 100GB space, where with the new
SSD it will get 240GB allocated), we had to create a RAID in MrBlonde. MrBlonde
currently has 3 130GB Cheetah SAS drives in its system, so we had to RAID0 2
drives to get the minimum capacity of 240GB we required.
The RAID was setup and it was time to install VMware ESXi
5.1 on MrBlonde. After booting the VMware installer it was time to select the hard
drive it should be installed on. To our surprise VMware didn’t show *any* available
hardware space at all. After some research we found out that in ESXi 5.1 our
3ware RAID controller no longer officially was supported.
After doing quite some research on the internet we figured
out we could “slipstream” the 3ware drivers into the VMware installer to make
it able to work with our 3ware controller again. Luckily for us some open
source developers had been so kind to create a tool to easily slipstream vib
driver files into a VMware ESXi installer ISO (needless to say we’ve send a
donation their way for the hours of work they saved us).
After creating the new ISO, loading it up on a USB drive and
booting the system, VMware finally saw our 3ware controller again and we could
go ahead with the install!
Once VMware was installed we ran into our next surprise. The
machine has 2 NIC’s, both with a different chipset. One was recognized, the
other wasn’t. As we just had some experience with the vib driver files this was
a quick fix by downloading some extra drivers and inserting them into the
system (We use the second NIC for our internal management LAN).
MrBlonde was fully installed and operational again, however,
our backup to transfer the MrBlonde VM was still going. As we were in the
datacenter already for like 3 hours we didn’t really want to wait for this.
After searching around for a while on google we found out
that there was something called “ovftool”, a VMware tool to migrate VM’s with
from one host to another (We don’t have vCenter so we couldn’t do it the ‘normal’
way). The downside however of ovftool was that it transfers the VM through the
host running the tool. The upside though, it respected thin provisioning and
would only transfer the actual data.
After thinking for a minute we realized that we could simple
start ovftool in one of our already operational virtual machines, start the
migration process, and drive home in the meantime.
Once this was done, MrBlonde could be booted again and all
MC servers were once more operational.
In the next part(s) we’ll talk about why we
choose VMware, besides the segregation of the gaming platforms, and we’ll
introduce you to all the new VM’s, there features and functions.