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vSphere HTML5 Web Client Fling v1.2 (h5client) : Going Away From Client Integration Plugin (CIP)

This blog post is going to introduce how to setup and install the first version of the fling (All instructions still apply in case you’re going to start installing from very basic):

In this blog we want to highlight few things that are very different: Avoiding dependency over the Client Integration Plugin (CIP). One of the new functional features is the ability to browse Datastores, and download a file.

In the vSphere 6.0 Web Client, doing so need the setup installation and execution of CIP, which has had its own issues, separate from the Flash runtime.

File download has been deployed within the h5client without any external plugin dependency.

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Configuration setup with the vCenter Server Appliance

Step 1: Run the given below command to register the Fling appliance with vCenter Server Appliance:

/etc/init.d/vsphere-client configure --start yes --user root --vc <FQDN or IP Address of vCenter Server> --ntp <FQDN or IP Address of NTP server>

vCenter Server Appliance

Step 2: Now, Continue the registration proceedings by answering “Yes” to continue connecting and typing your vCenter Server Appliance password.

vCenter Server Appliance to the vSphere HTML5 Web

While registration process, the following configuration files are created and deplicated from the vCenter Server Appliance to the vSphere HTML5 Web Client Fling: webclient.properties, ds.properties, and also, store.jks.

To assure the vCenter Server Appliance bash shell is activated and enabled permits for SCP to copy these configuration files over to the Fling Appliance. Lastly, the registration script is starting the web server, also installing any packages and plugins needed.

vSphere - vCenter Server Appliance

Configuration setup with vCenter for Windows

As mentioned earlier the vSphere HTML5 Web Client Fling also does works with vCenter 6.0 for Windows. This process is very similar to the vCenter Server Appliance.

In this current release of the Fling there is much of manual configuration which is done on the Windows side, however, this will be more automated in a predicted future release of the Fling. This configuration was performed running vCenter 6.0 on Windows Server 2012 R2, however other versions of windows might also work.

Step 1 : Go to the vSphere HTML5 Web Client Fling site then download the Fling OVA and the server-configure.bat. Implement the Fling appliance and power on.

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Step 2: On your present vCenter Windows server Run or execute the server-configure.bat as administrator or with an account which has local administrator rights.

The very same configuration files got created on the vCenter Server Appliance (webclient.properties, ds.properties, store.jks) are also created on Windows.

Kindly note: The script expected vCenter was installed using the default path. Amend or modify the install path in the script to your vCenter path.

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Please note: In case you run the server-configuration.bat without administrator rights you are going to receive errors and the appropriately correct files are not got created.

Step 3: SSH into the vSphere HTML5 Web Client Fling appliance and generate the essential directories for the configuration files:

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● mkdir /etc/vmware/vsphere-client/
● mkdir /etc/vmware/vsphere-client/vsphere-client/
● mkdir /etc/vmware/vsphere-client/config/

Once the directories are newly created, copy and place the configuration files in the respective directory.

Kindly note: In this given example WinSCP was used to replicate the configuration files to their directories on the Fling Appliance.

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● /etc/vmware/vsphere-client/config/ds.properties
● /etc/vmware/vsphere-client/store.jks
● /etc/vmware/vsphere-client/vsphere-client/webclient.properties

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Step 4: To add or append the NTP server(s) run the given below command on the Fling appliance

/etc/init.d/vsphere-client configure ntp_servers <IP address of NTP server(s)>

Kindly note: It’s imperative to keep time in sync between vCenter and the Fling appliance.

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Step 5: Begin the vSphere HTML5 Web Client web server
/etc/init.d/vsphere-client start

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Accessing the HTML5 Client

When the vSphere HTML5 Client Web server has began, then go on to:

https://<IP address or FDQN of the HTML5 Web Client appliance>:9443/ui

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You must be familiar with the login screen! You got officially logged in the new vSphere HTML5 Web Client. There are some things I should like to point out:

● Logon load consumption time has improvised; it takes five to six seconds now.
● Faster overall speed and response time.
● Search is present now on the top center of the page.
● Smiley face present in the upper right hand corner is the feedback tool.
● Tabs have been eased and simplified.
● Choosing on the word “vSphere Client” in the upper left route you to home.

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One imperative feature is the smiley face present in the upper right hand corner. While it looks simple, it actually serves a purpose.

It’s your gateway to engineering, or we’ll depict it as the feedback tool. This is your chance to offer valuable input and help shape your future client.

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Troubleshooting

Listed are few things to verify and validate in case you execute into any issues on the way:

● Use the following command to validate the status of the vSphere Client Web Server service
/etc/init.d/vsphere-client status

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● Other commands consists of start, stop, and restart
● Verify or validate that SSH is enabled on the vCenter Server Appliance
● Validate or verify time is in sync between the vSphere HTML5 Web Client Fling Appliance and vCenter Server

● Ensure the vCenter Server Appliance Bash Shell is enabled

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● If custom certificates is used then use the FQDN of the vCenter server during the initial registration

HTML5 technology is not very new to VMware. The Platform Services Controller UI (6.0 U1) and the Embedded Host Client (6.0 U2), both completely support HTML5.

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