Home Lab, NSX, NTP, and Update Manager

I’m writing about a comedy of errors trying to deploy vRA and NSX in my homelab. As usual, I just grab the bits and start trying to make things work.

tl;dr: Use NTP in your home lab, NSX host prep relies on Update Manager, and look at the VMware interop guide.

My first problem was an inability to deploy the NSX VIBs with error “Agent VIB module not installed”. I googled around and found this KB “Agent VIB module not installed” when installing EAM/VXLAN Agent using VUM (2053782)“, but it didn’t apply to 6.5

I started tailing /var/log/messages and my vpxd.log on the VCSA and saw certificate errors as well as complaints about NTP drift. So I tried refreshing the certificates
/usr/lib/vmware-updatemgr/bin/updatemgr-util refresh-certs

This eliminated the certificate complaints, and the NTP errors were because I hadn’t properly configured NTP across the whole lab. I rarely have dedicated lab time, so I’m doing the work in small chunks across many days. Sometimes I miss some of the basic steps like NTP. I ended up syncing everything in the lab to the NTP service running on my core switch.

I still was unable to deploy the VIBs, and at that point I discovered that the VIB deployment is reliant on Update Manager. I opened up update manager in the web client only to discover that it errored out. Having services down was not a surprise because I’m experimenting with just how little RAM I can give the VCSA in my lab and still have it functional.

root@vc01 [ /usr/lib/vmware-updatemgr/bin ]# service-control –status
applmgmt lwsmd vmafdd vmonapi vmware-cm vmware-content-library vmware-eam vmware-perfcharts vmware-rhttpproxy vmware-sca vmware-sps vmware-vapi-endpoint vmware-vmon vmware-vpostgres vmware-vpxd vmware-vpxd-svcs vmware-vsan-health vmware-vsm vsphere-client vsphere-ui
vmcam vmware-imagebuilder vmware-mbcs vmware-netdumper vmware-rbd-watchdog vmware-statsmonitor vmware-updatemgr vmware-vcha
root@vc01 [ /usr/lib/vmware-updatemgr/bin ]# service-control –start vmware-updatemgr

Once I started the service I could use update manager in the GUI, but still not deploy the VIBs. I rebooted vCenter, still no success deploying VIBs even though all of the services were up. At this point I went back to the basics of how to install NSX, and the first step is to check the interop. Uh-oh. My lab is running vSphere 6.5.0d. I was trying to deploy NSX 6.2.7. And they’re not compatible.

I ended up fixing some bugs in the lab, which was good, but I spent a lot of time troubleshooting something that was never going to work!

Once I used a supported version, things got much better.


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