HPE CloudPhysics Virtual Appliance Network Troubleshooting Guide

The HPE CloudPhysics Virtual appliance is an on-premise data collection tool that requires both local and internet access to operate. This short list of troubleshooting scenarios will assist you in identifying where your network issues may be originating and how to correct them.

First, some requirements/limitations of the Virtual Appliance.

  1. All network setting for the virtual appliance are defined in the VMware vCenter interface during the OVA / OVF deployment.
  2. The HPE CloudPhysics virtual appliances uses IPv4 to connect to the network
  3. The HPE CloudPhysics virtual appliance requires DNS resolution of internet names
  4. The HPE CloudPhysics virtual appliance must be able to reach the VMware vCenter
  5. The HPE CloudPhysics virtual appliance must be able to communicate with the public internet either directly or through a proxy configured in the appliance
  6. The HPE CloudPhysics virtual appliance has a single network adapter. Note: a special CloudPhysics appliance with dual network adapters can be request for a VMware vCenter on restricted networks to allow for dual network connectivity (private and public).
  7. The HPE CloudPhysics virtual appliance does not support VLAN tagging
  8. The HPE CloudPhysics virtual appliance does not support IPv6

Troubleshooting Steps

External Connectivity Firewall Rules and Proxy Settings

Some networks restrict outbound access to secure subnets to a limited set of destinations and protocols or through a proxy server. If this is a requirement for your organization, you will need to enable a rule to allow the HPE CloudPhysics virtual appliance to communicate outbound from the network segment to the following destination:

https://entanglement.cloudphysics.com:443

Do not create network rules based on IP Address as this address is not guaranteed to be static due to being a cloud-based Software as a Service (SaaS) platform and may change in the future. If you must configure an IP address-based rule, ping the network destination to resolve the current IP Address. Be aware that you may receive an email notice in the future that the appliance has disconnected and will need to be reconnected to the network. If you receive such a notice, validate the target IP address of the cloud endpoint, and change your network rules accordingly.

VMware vCenter 6.5 and 6.7 HTML Client

Note, VMware vCenter 6.5 and 6.7 had some issues defining network attributed during import. OVF Support was not yet integrated in HTML 5 client and the Flash based client is no longer supported. If you find that you are unable to view, change, or specify network attributes in VMware vCenter, you can use the alternate method of deploying the VM from the ESXi server web interface. This will resolve some of the know VMware vCenter issues. If you are having issues deploying the appliance, deploy OVF files using the command line. For more information, see the OVF Tool Documentation. https://www.vmware.com/support/developer/ovf/

Start with a Clean OVA/OVF Install

First, when all else fails, simply delete the virtual appliance and redeploy a current appliance from a new download from the web (https://download.cloudphysics.com). This will ensure that all attributes in the OVA / OVF deployment process were specified correctly. The HPE CloudPhysics appliance is stateless and be deleted and redeployed at any time you feel you need to make a change to the appliance definition or are uncertain about an appliance configuration.

Defining Static or DHCP Addresses in vCenter

When deploying the OVA / OVF, you will have the option to specify a Static IP Address or take advantage of DHCP for a dynamic address for the appliance. Note that vCenter will require all field to be either left blank for DHCP or all fields to be provided for Static IP Address. You cannot provide some data and leave other part blank.

For a Static IP Address, you will need to specify the following:
Default Gateway, DNS, Management IP Address (VM network IP), Management Network (subnet mask).

Solution: If any if these values are specified in the OVA/OVF import, VMware vCenter will default to a Static IP Address and not use any DHCP values. Always define all values if you intend to use a static IP Address or leave all values blank if you intend to use DHCP.

Appliance Startup Timeouts and No IP Address

If you open the console immediately after starting the virtual appliance, you will see the OS system check and startup process. After a few seconds you will see:

Welcome to the Observer.
Please wait while the configuration UI loads.
Observer login:

If the observer remains on this screen for more than 20 seconds, then the issue is likely that the appliance is not getting an IP Address from vCenter. If the appliance is waiting for more than 15 to 20 seconds at the login prompt, this indicates that the network stack is waiting for a network configuration from VMware vCenter. If an address is not assigned, the startup process will time-out between 30 and 60 seconds and continue to a Terms of Services screen without assigning the static or DHCP address. Instead, the OS will use a self-assigned address that will not be reachable on your network.

If this situation occurs, confirm the IP address in the VMware vCenter console is displayed and correct.

Solution: The most common cause of this problem is when a network requires a VM to be registered with DHCP or other network management tools by MAC address to assign an IP Address. If this situation occurs, reach out to the network management team to determine if there are sufficient IP Addresses in the subnet or that an IP Address has accurately been assigned to the VM.

Validate VM has an IP Address

The most basic validation will be to view the VM Summary in vCenter and confirm the presence of a DNS Name and IP Address. If DHCP or a Static IP address was assigned successfully, it will be reflected in VMware vCenter. If no address is found on the VM Summary, the appliance is either deployed in a network segment without DHCP or our network IP management system my not have a valid configuration applied to the appliance MAC address. The IP address is assigned by VMware vCenter, so if no address has associated with the VM, the error is occurring between VMware vCenter and your network definition or management resources.

Ping the VM from a VM in the same network segment

This is a direct follow-up to the last step of ensure the IP address is visible. Ensure you can ping the IP address of the virtual appliance from another VM in the same network segment or from someplace else on the network. Ideally, this should originate in the same network segment as the appliance or vCenter to ensure connectivity.

If you are unable to ping the appliance, ensure the network segment is not restricted or other network rules are not blocking the packets.

Is the VMware vCenter PSC is reachable by Name

One of the first steps in the appliance setup is to specify the primary VMware vCenter Platform Service Controller (PSC). The first connection attempt should be with a Fully Qualified Domain Name (FQDN). If the VM can connect to the PSC, we now know that the appliance has both a valid IP Address and valid DNS. If the name cannot be resolved, it is likely that the DNS is not configured correctly, or the network connection is not present. If we can communicate with the VMware vCenter by FQDN, we have confirmed that the network address is valid and the VM is connected to the network. Any further restrictions would be related to network access ACLS/Rules or firewall/proxy filters. Continue to network proxy configuration and firewall rules.

Is the VMware vCenter PSC is reachable by IP Address

If we are unable to connect to the PSC by a FQDN, we next want to try and connect to the PSC by the IP Address. If the IP Address can reach the PSC, then we have an invalid DNS that will restrict access to the HPE CloudPhysics cloud API interface. If the IP address fails to resolve as well, but we can ping the IP Address, then we have a network segmentation issue. If we can communicate with the VMware vCenter by IP address, we have confirmed that the network address is valid and the VM is connected to the network. Any further restrictions would be related to network access ACLS/Rules or firewall/proxy filters.
I can connect to VMware vCenter, but the outbound proxy server setting is not working
If you can connect to the PSC, but you are getting a notice that you cannot connect to CloudPhysics, you are now at the point where the Proxy configuration may be incorrect or there is a network rule restricting outbound access. First, validate that you are providing a Proxy server address or name and port in the proper format. Example: Proxy.mycompany.local:8080

Also validate that a proper user credentials is used if required. This credential may be in the format of username@domain.com or domain\username in the input field. Try both formats.

If Proxy is not required, but I cannot connect to CloudPhysics
At this point, we have confirmed we can connect to the VMware vCenter, we have a proper IP Address, and we have a valid DNS setting. If the communications is blocked at this point, the block is usually occurring at the network gateway, firewall, or proxy server. Check with the network administrator that the IP address of the virtual appliance is allowed outbound communications on port 443 to https://entanglement.cloudphysics.com.

If All Else Fails:

For additional support, please contact cloudphysicssupport@hpe.com. Please provide us your organization name, some background to the problem, and the steps you have tried to resolve the issue. We will set up a time to work with you to assist evaluating and resolving the problem.

Recap of Troubleshooting Steps

  1. Defined IP Address as Static or DHCP. All or nothing specific in OVA/OVF import.
  2. When the appliance powers up, verify an address is assigned in vCenter Summary view.
  3. Verify how long the appliance takes to get to the Terms of Service screen.
  4. Does the appliance have an IP Address assigned in the vCenter VM Details view? If yes, the VM likely is on the network.
  5. Ping the IP Address of the appliance. If it does not reply, is it segmented, firewalled, or may have a port not connected to a vSwitch.
  6. When you start the Appliance config, can you resolve the vCenter PSC name in the first select a vCenter screen? If not via FQDN, try IP address. If IP Address, then DNS is incorrect.
  7. If you can connect to vCenter, but get hung up connecting to CloudPhysics, the issue typically is DNS, Firewall, or Proxy rules.
  8. Ensure policy or rules for access to https://entanglement.cloudphysics.com:443
  9. When all else fails, delete the appliance and redeploy. It is stateless, so no data will be lost. When deploying, ensure all network fields are blank is using DHCP or ALL FIELDS are provided if using a Static IP Address.