RVTools – A VMware Admin’s best friend

Today I would like to talk about one of my favorite tools that I use both internally and with my clients.

RVTools – https://www.robware.net/rvtools/

RVTools is a free utility that you can use to discover what is going on with your VMware Environment. All you have to do it install the client on your machine and in a few minutes you are able to log into your vSphere Environment (using your normal vSphere Credentials) and it will give you a read out of your entire environment.

From the login Screen the look and feel is very reminiscent of the old C# vSphere Client used back in 5.x and 6.0 days.

Once you log in you are presented with the vInfo tab which is a summary of everything going on with the vSphere/ESXi host you Connected to.

Along the top you will see a series to tabs that will drill down into the various components of your environment such as the ones seen below

I am only going to cover a few of these features, but I encourage you to try it out for your self.

 vCD will show you what Virtual Machine has a CD Drive installed on it, if it is connected, and what .ISO is currently connected to it. So ,.for instance, if you have a Virtual Machine that will not vMotion, you could use this tool to see if it is attached to a .ISO that is on Local Storage.

vSnapshot will show you all the Virtual Machines that have snapshots associated with it. It will report back to you the name of the Virtual Machine, the name of the Snapshot, the Date/Time it was taken, and the File Name of the snapshot.

And Lastly we will touch on the vHealth tab. This tab will give you advice on things that you may not realize is going on in your environment such as inconsistent naming, Host logs not being stored on persistent storage, VMware tools being out of date, and Zombies (Files that exist on Datastores, but are not in inventory).

On a final note that I forgot to mention, If you go up into the file menu you are able to export everything you see in the tool to a .CSV which can become very handy for documenting your environment. 
I hope you find this post useful and if you do download this product, please consider donating to it’s creator. Without tools like this it would make all of our jobs much harder. 

How to add Target Servers to vMA

I have had this one post sitting around for a while and I figured I should get it written before it gets lost.

Earlier I was working on getting vMA stood up in my lab environment and I figured that I should do a post about how to configure vMA to connect to a target. Adding a Target Server in vMA is a faster way for you to be able to issue commands. Rather than having to specify which server you want to run commands against (especially if you are running several commands on the same box) you should set the server as a target. In this instance I will run through the steps of setting a target for an AD Authenticated host or vCenter. 

From the vMA console you will type the following command out:

vifp addserver <vcenter server name.domain.local> –authpolicy adauth –username <AD DOMAINUserName>

and press Enter and you will be prompted for the Password of the AD account that you referenced.

To verify that the server is connected you can use the following command:
vifp listservers –long

This will tell you the server name as well as the method of authentication. Now anytime you want to run a command against that host you will be able to do so without having to re-authenticate every time.

To set your Target server you can use the following command prior to running your actual command or script.

vifptarget -s <servername>

VMWare Virtual Machine will not Start in vCenter

So I was asked by a client to do up “hardware upgrades” on one of their virtual machines. This VM is not production and is not running anything at the moment, but will soon become an SQL Server running an application. So I went and powered off the VM, logged into the C# vSphere client (they are running vSphere 6.0), and doubled the memory as requested by the client.

After making the change I went to power on the VM and I get presented with this pop up error message from VMWare

The message itself seems pretty generic but I have actually seen this one before. This error has to do with  an issue with the management agents on  your ESXi host.

I followed the instructions found on this KB article but it did not resolve my issue. I also found this KB article which might yield better results but as this whole environment is production, I will need to wait to test that.


In order to get this VM powered back online, I needed to log directly into the virtual host and power on the machine.

The VM powered on with no issues.

I hope you find this helpful and I will update this when I have a solution.