Thursday, May 29, 2014

Fusion IO card not found?

I recently moved a 80GB Fusion IO card from a retired server running ESX 4.1 to a newer server running ESXi 5.1U1.  Upon installing the latest Fusion IO ESXi driver (version 3.2.6) I was greeted with the message "fio-status requires the driver to be loaded on this platform" when trying to find out the status of the card.

Using the ESXi shell command lspci -v showed the card present in the host, but why wasn't the driver seeing it and loading?

Turns out if the firmware of the card is too old, the newer driver doesn't acknowledge the presence of the card.  On a wild guess after poking around the VMware HCL, I uninstalled the 3.2.6 driver and installed version 2.3.9 which was also listed as being compatible with ESXi 5.1.

Eureka!  The card was found, but a warning was present to update the firmware.

Updated the firmware and the card was good to go with the old 2.3.9 driver.

Then I updated the driver to 3.2.6, flashed the firmware again with the 3.2.6 compatible version, formatted the card and finally I was up to date with a working card.

Thursday, May 1, 2014

Logon Performance Enhancements

I’ve been experimenting with logons to try to making them faster for my users, and have come across a way to make the initial profile creation go faster…

- Delete the value “StubPath” under this key:

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Active Setup\Installed Components\{44BBA840-CC51-11CF-AAFA-00AA00B6015C}

(I actually renamed mine to BACKUP_StubPath in case I ever wanted to reverse it)

Also change the following key:

[HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Active Setup\Installed Components\{44BBA840-CC51-11CF-AAFA-00AA00B6015C}]

Modify it to "IsInstalled"=dword:00000000

This will prevent “Windows Mail” from generating around 14MB of content when the user profile is created (local folder under AppData, not roaming). It seems to be some sort of database thats created and who actually uses the Windows Mail application now-adays? Probably the same number that still use Outlook Express....


It can also be disabled through group policy as well if you don't want to do it via the registry:

CPU Config -> Admin Templates -> Windows Components -> Windows Mail -> Turn off windows mail application - enabled

This change cut about 15-20 seconds off my login times, and undoubtedly saved IOPS as well.