VMWARE VM starts global information

Posted on 2012-08-14
Last Modified: 2012-09-02
Can someone explain to me how esxi5 works with auto starting virtual machine.
I am used to Microsoft virtual server and it clear and simple how it works: when you do a properties on a virtual machine, you have the Boot option with 1-don't boot, 2- previous states 3- always boot.
I don't see that in VMWare???

What happended this weekend was a power outage and only half of them rebooted not the other half. I have noticed that half of the servers successfully received a shutdown command from my MAIN UPS and the other half did not.
The half that received the shutdown and were cleanly shutdown did not reboot.
The half that did not received the shutdown and were forced shutdown all rebooted ok.

So looks like VMWare Boot option is setup by default to "As previous state".
So the server that were turn off right before the power outage never restarted.
Question by:SigSupport
    LVL 116

    Expert Comment

    by:Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE)
    do you have a VMware HA Cluster?

    have you configured the VMs to Auto Start or Shutdown with host?

    Im guessing but it would seem you could have VMware HA, which will restart VMs, that are Auto HA Protected when a host fails.

    If VMs were shutdown manually, they are not HA protected because theynare OFF, and HA will not restart these automatically.

    Auto Start and Shutdown Virtual Machines

    Just log into your ESX server using the vSphere GUI Client, click on the host, then click the Configuration tab. In the 'Software' box, click the Virtual Machine Startup/Shutdown link. In the upper right click Properties.

    However, it's not recommended to override, and set Auto Startup and Shutdown if you have VMware HA enabled.

    Author Comment

    Yes I have a HA cluster.
    We have 4 blades in Cisco UCS chassis and all vm and ESX host boots from an EMC San.

    The vm's that crash when the ups went down restarted when the power came back online so I guess HA restarted them when it notice they were forced shutdown.
    But HA did not restart the VM's that were shutdown by Windows after receiving the UPS warning battery was low. Probably HA saw that these vm's were off and let them off??
    So what to do for those. I went where you said on each blade esx configuration and I can see that the option "Start and Stop Virtual Machine with the system" is disable for all of them and all vm's are in the "Manual Startup" group.
    If I turn this on and put it in the Auto-Start what would happens in the following case:
    All my vm's can (and eventually would) move from one blade or another by VCenter for when resources is missing, when a blade fails etc... So when they are moved to another blade are they be put in the "Manual Startup" group by default?? I am afraid yes, so even if I moved them to the group "Autostart" now, if that settings gets lots every time a vm's gets moved to another blade then that's not good.
    LVL 116

    Accepted Solution

    But HA did not restart the VM's that were shutdown by Windows after receiving the UPS warning battery was low. Probably HA saw that these vm's were off and let them off??

    This is the correct action for HA, because HA protection was not available because the VMs were OFF!

    It's not recommended to use Auto Start with VMware HA, because the HA and VMs Auto Starting can conflict.

    Author Comment

    I've requested that this question be deleted for the following reason:

    Did not find a way to put all VM in the "Start by default" position.
    LVL 116

    Expert Comment

    by:Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE)
    Im objecting because its not recommended by VMware, and overrides a design feature of HA.

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