UPDATED FlashArray: vSphere plugin PowerShell update script

[ NOTE: machine translation with the help of DeepL translator without additional proofreading and spell checking ]


By request of some script users the PowerShell script was improved:

  • currently available plugin versions are output before entering the target version in option 3

  • Security improvement: automatic disconnection from FlashArray after script termination

There will follow a post about the latest features of the latest plugin version.


There is also news about the anchored Purity Standard plugin! Since 5.3.10/6.0.2 the vCenter plugin version 4.3.1 or newer is anchored in the standard. It is now also possible for you to roll out the HTML plugin via the FlashArray GUI in the future. Plugin version 3 will no longer be rolled out as of Purity 5.3.9.


Below is an overview:



The application examples (see below) and their sample images have not been updated!


↓ following text is identical to the post from June 2019 ↓


Pure Storage offers FlashArray, a VMware vSphere plugin.

With the plugin, the most important "daily" storage operations can be performed directly from vCenter. VMware administrators can, for example, create a storage volume for new datastores at the same time. The plugin can also be used to trigger storage snapshots, configure hosts for iSCSi, roll out VASA providers and much more.


The plugin itself is an optional and non-critical system component.

That means: it is not mandatory for the operation of volumes and datastores, but rather an add-on and "nice to have". The integration can be installed, updated and uninstalled at any time.


It is possible to roll out the plugin via the Purity GUI/CLI. Within Purity there is always a plugin in version X (depending on the Purity version) for vCenter Flex already included. The latest Purity 5.3 comes with the plugin for vCenter based on Flash Player in version 3.1.2 as standard.


Currently, there is no Purity that includes the HTML5 plugin as standard.

For the rollout of the plugin itself, only a connection and an administrative user (plugin installation credentials) to vCenter is required. These credentials are only needed temporarily, because they will be discarded after the rollout (at the latest after logout/time-out of Purity).


With a Purity update, the latest Pure Storage vCenter plugin is not automatically staged in a newer version. The plugin in version 3.1.2 only supports vCenter Flex (Adobe Flash Player) and cannot be enabled in vCenter HTML5.

When you get right down to it, these are actually two separate independent plugins. It is also possible to install/use both plugin (Flash + HTML) within one vCenter.


The HTML5 support for the Pure Storage plugin came from plugin version 4.0.0.

The most up-to-date overview is available after logging in to the Pure1 portal under Solutions > VMware Platform Guide > "Release Notes: vSphere Client Plugin - All Versions".


Requirements


Mandatory for the use of the HTML5 plugin is a vCenter 6.5 U2 or newer. Of course, vCenter 6.7 is also supported.


When using the PowerShell script, the target vCenter must be able to establish an Internet connection via HTTPS/Port 443 to Amazon AWS S3.

 

HINTS

  • There is no RBAC support in the HTML-5 plugin.

  • For vCenters with Enhanced Linked Mode: you must ensure that the plugin is installed for each linked vCenter Server if the plugin is installed on a vCenter Server that is in Enhanced Linked Mode (ELM).

 


The plugin update process


As a customer or partner you have the choice between two update options of the plugin:


  1. Array-based Update: here the plugin is updated within Purity on the Pure Storage Array itself by the support. Limitation: you have to create a ticket here and schedule the update of the plugin accordingly (of course like all updates/upgrades 4free). Here one has then afterwards the possibility over the Purity GUI/CLI as used to roll out the Plugin. What is not possible to keep both Flash and HTML plugin within an array. In addition, it should be noted that after a Purity upgrade, the HTML plugin bundle is replaced again with the Flash installation package. I therefore always prefer the following variant (2):

  2. Do It Yourself: use the created PowerShell script from PUREFLASH.blog and upgrade the plugin yourself within a very short time. Difference to variant 1 one does not update the integration directly within the array, but installs via direct download from the Pure1 Cloud on the target vCenter. As described above, this requires a connection via HTTPS/Port 443 of the vCenter into the WAN to Amazon AWS S3 (Pure1).

 

TIP: for more details on the interfaces/modules also read Cody's blog post "Installing the Pure Storage vSphere Plugin with PowerShell" on the Pure Storage Plugin topic. Cody created the basis for the script created with his "Pure Storage VMware module".

Great work mate!

 

How To: Install the plugin via Purity GUI


In my test environment I have a vCenter 6.7 still without Pure Storage plugin. We are therefore docking to a fresh vCenter instance.

We log in to the array and go to Settings > Software > vSphere Plugin. We see: version 3.1.2 is available and we therefore only have the option to roll out the Flex plugin. Now we initiate a connection by clicking on the checkbox in the right corner with "Edit".

We temporarily store an authorized user for the installation. As described above, this is only needed temporarily and is then discarded.


In the first step, a connection is established to the vCenter and a check is performed to determine whether a plugin is already integrated. If, contrary to expectations, a plugin is detected, the possibly outdated array plugin can be updated within the vCenter via this path (requires a newer version on array - see variant 1).


In our case there is no plugin in the vCenter instance and we start the deployment by clicking on "Install".


After a short time, the plugin will appear in vCenter Administration under Solutions > Client Plug-Ins. If this is not the case, I recommend refreshing the browser or logging into the vCenter again.

As expected we can now see that version 3.1.2 is not compatible and we are not able to activate this version within vCenter HTML.

A rollout via the Purity CLI and the command "pureplugin..." would also be a viable path at this point.


How To: Update Pure Storage plugin - Do It Yourself style


The script can be downloaded free of charge in the PUREFLASH.blog member area. The registration is done quickly, it is non-binding and revocable at any time. Beside the script there are already several other contents available for download. So it's worth to register: to the protected area.


I have packed the script together with the release notes into a ZIP file, which is only 3 KB in size. After successful unpacking you have to run the Windows PowerShell as administrator. This is mandatory to install the corresponding interface modules.


The VMware PowerCLI and the Pure Storage VMware Module are required as interface modules.

After the script has been executed, the vCenter to be connected is queried immediately. In a prompt, the corresponding login data is requested. Of course, a temporary user with sufficient privileges for the plug-in installation is required here as well.


VMware would have at this point (in the course of the use of the PowerCLI) a participation in the "Customer Experience Improvement Program" short CEIP in the offer. I thankfully decline here and ignore this message.

If you don't like this message, you can disable it by using the corresponding PowerShell command: Set-PowerCLIConfiguration -Scope User -ParticipateCEIP $false .

 

INFO: In the case of an unencrypted connection (e.g., a connection via IP), certificate errors may occur, resulting in a failed connection setup. If the FQDN and a suitable certificate are available, there will be no problems at this point.

I recommend to ignore all invalid certificate messages via PowerShell command when connecting via IP addresses: Set-PowerCLIConfiguration -InvalidCertificateAction ignore -confirm:$false .

 

After successful login, you now have the possibility to perform all necessary operations for the update via the menu.

[this step can be skipped if already installed]

By selecting option 1 we start the installation of the VMware PowerCLI module. Here we have to allow the installation from an untrusted repository.


After successful installation you will automatically end up in the selection menu again.


[this step can be skipped if already installed]

By selecting option 2 we start the installation of the Pure Storage VMware module. Here we also have to allow the installation from an untrusted repository.


After successful installation you will also automatically return to the selection menu.

[skip steps END]

Now we get down to the nitty-gritty.


By selecting option 3 we start the installation or update of the respective plugin.

We intend to install the HTML5 plugin and select accordingly with the input of the version (according to our previously obtained information of the Pure Storage Pure1 documentation) the update/target version.

If there is already a plugin in the specified target version, the script is so intelligent and detects this and terminates the script.

We have to confirm the installation briefly and off we go.


The script also allows to update the Flash plugin this way. For this, only the respective version (Flash/HTML) must be specified.


In the background, the respective plugin is downloaded from the Amazon AWS S3 Cloud (Pure1) via HTTPS/Port 443 and installed automatically.

After successful installation, you will automatically return to the selection menu.


You can exit the script at any time by entering "Q". Closing the PowerShell window also ends the script.

As we can see, the plugin is now displayed in the HTML5 vCenter with the new version. After a short initialization, the plugin can finally be activated and used.


If the plugin is not displayed directly in the vCenter, I also recommend a refresh of the browser and a new login to the vCenter.

The plugin is accessible in several places of the vCenter. Below are two examples via the dropdown menu and the home page.


How To: Uninstall - "no no no...the plugin is great"


If you no longer need the plugin, it can be deactivated via vCenter Administration > Client Plugins and uninstalled via the Purity GUI/CLI. Likewise, the plugin can also be uninstalled "hard but easy" via the vCenter Managed Object Browser "MOB" for short. For this you can find countless articles on Google.

Download


To download the files you have to register for free in the exclusive PUREFLASH.blog members area. In the future new documents and tools will be made available here. So it's worth to register: to the exclusive area


More info - Links


All officially published setting options in the GUI but also CLI can be read via the "on-board" user guides of the Pure Storage systems.


Click on "Help" in the Purity main menu.


The User Guide is structured like the main menu and can be opened downwards. A search function is also integrated - within here you can also search for keywords.

WEB: Pure Storage (Pure1) support portal - Ticket system and support *(requires registered FlashSystems)

PHONE: Pure Storage phone support: GER - (+49) (0)800 7239467; INTERNATIONAL - (+1) 650 7294088

WEB: Pure Storage community

WEB: Pure Storage OFFICIAL blog

The blog lives from your questions, wishes and suggestions...every comment is welcome. I am very grateful for feedback.

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