VMware vSAN continues its progress into the enterprise environments. Smaller or bigger. The vSAN product itself has recently reached 8000 customers which is great. vSAN 6.6 is already the 6th release of the product's existence, which is roughly 3 years. We have reported on the 5.5 release back in 2013. This post will detail Time Configuration For vSAN Witness.
The latest vSAN 6.6 has been detailed in our post, including some configuration demo, and we like the way product works and its fast development cycles. Our readers could read few more posts about vSAN 6.6, such as the detailed announce of vSAN 6.6 or the vSAN 6.6 “Nested” lab configuration demo.
Today, we'll go and have a look at small configuration problem we had. It's really small and some might say not important as you don't run any VMs on your Witness host anyway. But to have all the checks green, you need to do that. Well, it seems that last time we set up a vSAN in the homelab we did not configure time on the Witness appliance.
Hey, have you done this on your end? This is a good example of vSAN health check feature. One of the system tests which are executed is to test if your hosts are in sync with their time. (In my case there weren't).
There you go. You can click to enlarge…
And when you select the problem and look on the lower section, you'll find exactly what's wrong. In this case we have a message telling us that the host (in this case the Witness) and vCenter differs more than 1 minute.
Fairly simple. If you know how to configure NTP and time servers for a VMware ESXi, you'll be able to do that for your Witness host as it's just a special virtualized ESXi.
You Select the Witness > Go to Configure TAB > System > Time Configuration > Edit
There you first start the service and enter timeservers.
Then restart the service. (mandatory).
It is pretty straightforward.
If you follow our blog and you're into VMware you know that it wasn't always that simple to find problems and that you had to first deploy a plugin to your vCenter and ESXi hosts so you had some reporting. But this was in vSAN 6.1 with an external plugin that could run a number of basics checks on a cluster. The health check present in vSAN 6.6 is very robust and detailed.
These health checks are backed by knowledge base articles so a customer can simply click on the “Ask VMware” button for a link to the corresponding article. It should be noted that this functionality requires the Customer Experience Improvement Program (CEIP) to be enabled on a cluster and that a vCenter have connectivity to the internet. If direct connectivity is not available it can leverage the vCenter proxy configuration.
vSAN observer and Ruby vSphere Console (RVC) are things of the past (or for most situations) as vSAN 6.6 has a built-in performance visibility via performance service and performance graphs where you can track things such as physical NICs errors, re-sync operations from vM IO actions. Also, a detailed performance can be exported and uploaded through CIEP allowing for troubleshooting without the need for a local instance of vSAN observer.
More from ESX Virtualization:
- What Is Erasure Coding?
- What is VMware DRS (Distributed Resource Scheduler)?
- What is VMware Hyper-Converged Infrastructure?
- What is The Difference between VMware vSphere, ESXi, and vCenter