HP SMH error importing SIM server certificates

When trying to set the Trusted Management Servers certificate in the HP Systems Management Homepage via pasting the base64 string or getting the certificate directly from the SIM server, I was greeted by one pretty generic error message:

Error: Certificate failed validation and was not imported.

This happened on physical GNU/Linux (RHEL) systems as well as Windows Server 2008 R2 machines .
Is it impossible to properly import a SIM certificate either by pasting the base64 encoded certificate string or by letting the SMH fetch the certificate by itself from the server?

Instead I had to manually copy the .pem certificate file to the server and restart the SMH. On Windows, it goes in C:\hp\hpsmh\certs\ (if you installed the server via SmartStart) and on GNU/Linux in /opt/hp/hpsmh/certs/.
I also noticed that the displayed certificate raw data you can see under Details (https://192.168.1.1:2381/proxy/smhui/getcertdata?certname_goes_here.pem) after having imported one actually cuts off a the last 2 or so lines of the base64 string, so don’t rely on copying this to create a file on your servers.

September ESXi HP updates

With the releases of vSphere 5.1, ESXi 4.1 U3 and Windows Server 2012, it’s time for hardware vendors to update their management agents again. HP did so recently and updated their bundles as follows. These bundles are supported for both, ESXi 5.0 and 5.1:

  • HP ESXi Offline Bundle for VMware ESXi 5.x (CIM providers) updated to 1.3
    Added specific HP ProLiant Gen8 servers to the server support matrix:
        HP ProLiant BL660c Gen8 server
        HP ProLiant  DL560 Gen8 server
  • HP ESXi Utilities Offline Bundle for VMware ESXi 5.x (ILO-config etc.) updated to 1.3
    Added support for the following servers:
        HP ProLiant BL660c Gen8 server
        HP ProLiant DL560 Gen8 server
  • HP NMI Sourcing Driver for VMware ESXi 5.x updated to 2.1. Note that this is not intended for HP ProLiant Gen8 servers.
    Edit 09/10/2012: Actually, the actual NMI VIB hasn’t been updated at all. It is still version  2.0.11-434156, which is exactly the same as the previous version. The only thing that changed was metadata in vendor-index.xml of the zip package to include a section to apply to version “5.1.0” too. An already installed hpnmi bundle won’t be updated because of this.
    # esxcli software sources vib list -d /vmfs/volumes/local_datastore_1/hp-nmi-esxi5.0-bundle-2.1-2.zip
    Name   Version        Vendor  Release Date  Acceptance Level  Status
    hpnmi  2.0.11-434156  hp      2011-07-29    PartnerSupported  Installed
  • HP Agentless Management Service Offline Bundle for VMware ESXi 5.x for the new HP ProLiant Gen8 servers updated to 9.2.0
    The following issues have been fixed:
    AMS Static data lost after clearing Active Health System Log
    iLO shows status Other for unplugged NIC port
    AMS crashes when new vSwitch is configured
    cpqSas trap not reported until query is made
    AMS Active Health does not handle iLO reset
    Added support for the following servers:
    HP ProLiant BL660c Gen8 server
    HP ProLiant DL560 Gen8 server
    Added support for the following:
    Memory DIMM status and iLO information for vCenter
    Logging to the OS event log
    cpqHoFWVer support for NIC and SAS controllers
    Added the Update number to the VMware version and build number
  • HP ProLiant Smart Array Controller Driver for VMware ESXi 5.0 updated to 5.0.0-28.0 (never really used this by the way).
    Add support for correctly displaying RAID 1(ADM) mode for logical volumes. Formerly, RAID 1(ADM) volumes were incorrectly displayed as RAID UNKNOWN.
    Remove code that limited the number of external target (array) device connections to 8 array ports. Exceeding 8 ports prevented logical volumes from registering with the driver. Improved code handling paths and targets.

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ESXi HP Updates

HP just released a batch of new firmware for their servers and blades, Virtual Connect modules as well as updated ESXi extensions. Here’s my take on the new stuff.

HP ESXi VIBs and handling Update Manager

Updated HP Extensions and notable excerpts from the release notes:

  • The ESXi offline bundle (CIM providers) has been updated to 1.2
    Added additional support for AC Lost detection for power supplies.
    Supporting some more gen8 servers
  • The Agentless Management Service (AMS) Offline Bundle for Gen8 servers has been updated to 9.1.0
    Added network and SAS driver information reporting.
    Added performance data reporting.
    Supporting some more gen8 servers
  • The ESXi utilities bundle has been updated to 1.2
    Supporting some more gen8 servers
  • The NMI Sourcing driver has not been updated for ESXi5, but for ESXi 4.1.

If you run ESXi on HP Proliant systems, you should add the HP vibsdepot to your vCenter Update Manager repositories if haven’t done so already. But even if you did so in the past, you’ll need to add another repository for the new bundles since HP changed the way they provide bundles from their vibsdepot. Instead of just adding “http://vibsdepot.hp.com/index.xml” as a custom download source in UpdateManager, which would yield the most up-to-date bundles, HP now distributes mutliple repositories based on release cycles:

http://vibsdepot.hp.com/
The following points define how to use vibsdepot under several customer scenarios:

– VUM – connect VUM to “http://vibsdepot.hp.com/hpq/<release date>/index.xml” to download complete update patches as well as individual patches.
– ESXCLI – use command “esxcli software vib install -d http://vibsdepot.hp.com/hpq/<release date>/index.xml”.

So in a nutshell, to make use of the updated bundles in VMware  Update Manager, you’ll have to add “http://vibsdepot.hp.com/hpq/jun2012/index.xml&#8221; in UM. You can also remove or deactivate the old vibsdepot URL.
And don’t forget to update the URL once HP releases updated extensions (or HP changes this procedure all over yet again)!
[Update: You actually do not need to do that anymore if you just use http://vibsdepot.hp.com/index.xml. This links all release versions now.]

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