jueves, 6 de noviembre de 2014

Typing ? (question mark sign) into Cisco IOS CLI

There are very rare occasions where you have the need to type the ? sign on Cisco IOS CLI, and when I say type it I mean really input that character and not using the IOS help.

As far as I know there aren't commands with the ? sign (you can feel free to prove me wrong though) so the most typical scenario for this would be the need to set a password with ? on it, ie: ?Cisco?Sys#

What you need to do to pull this off without the help popping up, is precede the ? with Ctrl-V. Like this:

Router(config)# username cisco password <Ctrl-V>?Cisco<Ctrl-V>?Sys#

Hope that helps, personally I never use question marks on my passwords but hey, to each his own... :)

miércoles, 5 de noviembre de 2014

vCenter Server Appliance - Configuring Static IP

Recently I tried to deploy a vCenter Server Virtual Appliance 5.1 in my lab environment, it has been a while since I did it so the last version I had used was 5.0 I think.

So I do all the common deployment steps which I will not go into depth, you know:
- Deploy OVF template.
- Select File and Click Next.
- Follow the steps in the OVF deployment and finish.

Whenever you deploy it using a vCenter or an older VCSA, you get to specify your network settings, like this:

But if you're vCenterless like me and you're just deploying it in your environment for the first time you can't specify these settings, you just finish the install as it is and power on our VM. So how do we configure an IP address to our newly installed VCSA once we power it on?

There are 2 options:

1.- DHCP Server.

This is the easy one, set up a DHCP Server (you probably already have one for the job though), VCSA VM default is to get IP address through DHCP, once the VM boots up and gets the DHCP address you will see the login screen:

You can follow step 1 (obviously the URL depends on the IP address it gets from the DHCP server) and login with the default username (root) and password (vmware) for all your further configurations. If you want to assign a static IP address go to the Network tab and do so.

2.- Assign Static IP Address through CLI

This options requires a little more work, and if you're not a Linux person like me you can find it a little more difficult.

As you probably know VCSA is based on a Red Hat Enterprise Linux, can't remember the exact distro though. So you can log in as root through the CLI and configure the network settings.

Because we don't have an IP address yet we can't start a SSH session with the VCSA so you have to do it through the Console Tab in vSphere Client. Login with root/vmware, then type this command:

vi /etc/sysconfig/networking/devices/ifcfg-eth0 

This command lets us edit the file for the vNIC configuration, edit the file with your preferred settings, for example:

Then type the command service network restart, this should restart the network settings, you can check if it worked with the command ifconfig. And with that you have configured the IP address for your VCSA.

If you need to access VCSA from a different network you need to specify a default route for your server, use this command:

route add default gw <RouteIPAddress> <NextHopIPaddress> eth0

For example:

route add default gw eth0

And there you go... Once you do this you will be able to have connectivity to your VCSA server and even the login screen will show the URL with your newly static assigned IP address.


Do the easy one, It's the one docummented on vmware forums and other blogs, besides, how hard it is to set up a DHCP server, right?  I was lazy and didn't want to set one up and I really wanted to do it manually just for the fun, feel fry to try it.

martes, 4 de noviembre de 2014


Hey guys,

My name is Eric and I'm a network engineer living in Monterrey City in Mexico. I'm used to work mostly with Cisco technologies, even though I've had some experiences with other vendors but Cisco is my passion, despite several difficulties I've encountered through my short career hehe.

While I enjoy working with Cisco in my everyday job I noticed that all my experiences handling different technologies (like Collaboration, Routing & Switching, Wireless, Data Center, Virtualization) could become handy for other people, and even for myself! Because sometimes I even forget things I did after some time has passed.

So for that matter I decided to make a little blog to share all the crazy stuff that happens in the (sometimes) interesting life of this mexican IT guy.

PS. I'm new to this blogging thing, so bare with me...