Issues with VMware ESX 4.0 Update 1

I’m normally pretty quick to leap on to VMware’s updates; at least in our test ESX 4 clusters. I’ve been pretty happy with ESX 4.0.0, but ESX 4.0 U1 has introduced some nasty problems that I’m not too thrilled about.

The first one is the now well-known issue with HP Insight management agents which I was lucky enough (not!) to find out before it was made public. So, that bricked one ESX server and I had to re-install it.

Secondly, I’ve been experiencing two probably-related issues: one where hosts disconnect and reconnect several times during the day; the other where hosts go in and out of alert statuses despite their health remaining good all the time. Here’s an example:

Note that one host has decided to disconnect itself and two hosts are showing alert status despite their being nothing wrong with them. (The host with a yellow status is normal, in this case.)

The final issue – and perhaps the worst for me – is there’s a (very repeatable) issue with Linux VMs kernel panicking when trying to mount a CD-ROM — even the VMware Tools CD! I’ve filed a support request with this, and here is the response:

I would like to inform you that we have been facing certain technical issues in 4.0 U1.

Therefore we have rolled it back and our engineering team is working on it on highest priority to sort out the issue.

I would therefore request you to use 4.0 for now. Once we get a confirmation from the concerned team, we will let you know to apply the patch.

So, I’m in the process of flattening our five 4.0 U1 hosts and re-installing 4.0.0 on them. Joy of joys…