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  #1  
Old 12-02-2013, 10:56 AM
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Skirge01 Skirge01 is offline
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ESXi free users beware!

I just upgraded my system to ESXi 5.5, due to some issues I was having with 5.0U1. Along the way, I stumbled onto this thread.

TL;DR: If you upgrade your VMs to version 10, you will no longer be able to manage them using the vSphere client. Version 10 (and up) will only allow changes to be made via the new web client, which requires vCenter (not free).
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  #2  
Old 12-02-2013, 11:40 AM
BobPhoenix BobPhoenix is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Skirge01 View Post
I just upgraded my system to ESXi 5.5, due to some issues I was having with 5.0U1. Along the way, I stumbled onto this thread.

TL;DR: If you upgrade your VMs to version 10, you will no longer be able to manage them using the vSphere client. Version 10 (and up) will only allow changes to be made via the new web client, which requires vCenter (not free).
Yep. It should work fine as long as you use VMs with earlier versions (I think with 5.0 I have Version 8). This was posted over on the unRAID forums a while ago but I never thought to post it here. This is one of the reasons I've been thinking about KVM or XEN which are open source. Just haven't had the time or the BOX to experiment on. Maybe if I find a deal tonight I will purchase enough component to build a test box.
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  #3  
Old 12-02-2013, 12:32 PM
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One last thing to point out for others who happen upon this thread. I've had issues with getting passthrough to work in both 5.0U1 and 5.5. On an existing ESXi (hypervisor) install, I'll enable it on something, reboot, and it won't "take"; it'll still be missing from the passthrough list. What I found is that if I reinstall ESXi from scratch, I can enable passthrough on as many things as I want, reboot, and they all take effect. However, after that, I can no longer enable or disable them. Weird! But, at least I have a workaround. You can always reinstall ESXi, enable passthrough as needed and just import your VMs again.

Can KVM or XEN do PCI and USB passthrough? Are they also free?

Any idea if we can update the vmtools in each VM without causing issues? Assuming it's safe, how do you go about updating vmtools? In the past, the interactive upgrade always fails to find the ISO it's looking for. I don't know what ISO it wants (the description seems incorrect in the error message), where to get it, or where to place it.
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  #4  
Old 12-02-2013, 01:22 PM
BobPhoenix BobPhoenix is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Skirge01 View Post
One last thing to point out for others who happen upon this thread. I've had issues with getting passthrough to work in both 5.0U1 and 5.5. On an existing ESXi (hypervisor) install, I'll enable it on something, reboot, and it won't "take"; it'll still be missing from the passthrough list. What I found is that if I reinstall ESXi from scratch, I can enable passthrough on as many things as I want, reboot, and they all take effect. However, after that, I can no longer enable or disable them. Weird! But, at least I have a workaround. You can always reinstall ESXi, enable passthrough as needed and just import your VMs again.
Never had that problem at least consistently. Once in a while I have to do it multiple times to stick but I've never had to reinstall ESXi to change. I know this because I change controllers to my Windows VMs fairly freguently. Went from PCIe HDD controller to PCI both external as well as eSata to Sata controllers and still on original install on that MB.

Quote:
Can KVM or XEN do PCI and USB passthrough? Are they also free?
Yes KVM is built into Linux OS and therefore is open source as is XEN. According to some guides (that were removed by original poster) they work MUCH better with pass through than ESXi as in no limit on the number and more compatibility. But as I said I have yet to try anything and with the guides being gone it will be harder. Have to hit Google cache to read them.

Quote:
Any idea if we can update the vmtools in each VM without causing issues? Assuming it's safe, how do you go about updating vmtools? In the past, the interactive upgrade always fails to find the ISO it's looking for. I don't know what ISO it wants (the description seems incorrect in the error message), where to get it, or where to place it.
Can't say I remember upgrading my tools but I put the ISO when I found it on my datastore in my ISO folder. The ISO file can be anywhere on the datastore drive that you want I put it with my Guest OS ISOs. You then assign it to a virtual CD ROM drive (while VM is running if the CD drive is already assigned to the VM). Then in the Guest VM just access the CD ROM drive. If it is a Windows Guest it may automatically find the CD after a brief wait while the guest scans the drive. If you have to browse the CD I believe the executable is at the root and is called setup or close to that.
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  #5  
Old 12-02-2013, 04:04 PM
doc doc is offline
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I had problems with PCI passthrough on 5.0 and eventually updated to 5.1, but it's that long since I tried passthrough that I can't remember if it worked or not.

I was going to upgrade to 5.5 last weekend but stumbled across the client issue while rebuilding my laptop, so decided not to bother.
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  #6  
Old 12-02-2013, 04:30 PM
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Fuzzy Fuzzy is offline
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I've looked into VM a few times. ESXi first, as I'm familiar with VMWare Player. However, on my hardware, i could never get ti to recognize it's IOMMU capability (though I have seen my hardware reported multiple times elsewhere as working). I thought i'd try KVM or XEN, and immediately came to the same realization that I do with most linux based things - If you don't already know what you are doing, there are no guides that can help you.
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  #7  
Old 12-02-2013, 06:50 PM
sacrament055 sacrament055 is offline
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Hey Fuzzy,
If you haven't already checked, make sure Intel virtualization is enabled in your bios as well as no execute memory protection. I've seen that cause issues.
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  #8  
Old 12-03-2013, 10:25 AM
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@BobPhoenix: Thanks for the info. The update of vmtools went off without a hitch following your tips. I'd like to give XEN or KVM a try, but it there's little to no information out there for non-Linux experts, then it's pointless. At least with ESXi, there's a lot of info available.
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  #9  
Old 12-03-2013, 11:14 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sacrament055 View Post
Hey Fuzzy,
If you haven't already checked, make sure Intel virtualization is enabled in your bios as well as no execute memory protection. I've seen that cause issues.
Yeah, it's not an intel board. I've verified with someone who reported it working and my BIOS settings were the same as his, just a different CPU (which shouldn't matter, as they both support it). Was only looking at it for something to play with, not important, just thought I'd bring it up.
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Primary Client: HD-300 through XBoxOne in Living Room, Samsung HLT-6189S
Other Clients: Mi Box in Master Bedroom, HD-200 in kids room
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  #10  
Old 12-03-2013, 12:08 PM
BobPhoenix BobPhoenix is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Skirge01 View Post
@BobPhoenix: Thanks for the info. The update of vmtools went off without a hitch following your tips. I'd like to give XEN or KVM a try, but it there's little to no information out there for non-Linux experts, then it's pointless. At least with ESXi, there's a lot of info available.
That's the biggest reason I'm still on ESXi 5.0. It is working and until I can try XEN, KVM there is no point to change as I don't have time for a server to be down for the weeks/months it might take me to get it to work without a good guide. ESXi I had a guide on unRAID forums to go by so was easy. This is also why I haven't upgraded to a newer ESXi since they have had reported problems with pass through or license changes that make them less appealing(this thread).
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