ESXi 7.0 Upgrade to Update 2 and iSCSI

I realized last night that in my efforts to get ESXi up and running, I had installed the original release of ESXi 7.0. Since I had taken Friday off work to take care of a few things that needed to be done during the weekdays I decided to upgrade ESXi to Update 2. It also allowed me to test my theory from my previous post.

The update worked as planned (and boy-oh-boy are updates slow!) but was successful. As I expected the iSCSI share did not show up in ESXi. Let’s check the NAS and see if the targets are still there and if the ESXi server is connected. Yep, ESXi is shown as a host in DSM.

Okay, ssh into the ESXi box. Can I ping the NAS? Yes, working fine.

Log into the ESXi console (again, I’m not using vSphere). The software iSCSI sees the host and the target. But, no iSCSI devices are showing up under storage devices and obviously the datastores are not present.

Let’s try my theory from the last post. Try esxcfg-volume -l and get the UUIDs. Well now, iSCSI volumes are not showing up. Let’s try a few more pings to the NAS, rescan the devices. Nope, not working.

Time for some deep thinking. No panic this time as I know that the VMs are still in the iSCSI LUNs and I just have to get them mounted. And I have good backups!

Some more Googling and the first result from Reddit (vSphere 7.0 U2 iSCSI not working with older HP Lefthand SAN) seems to have the answer. It seems that the issue is around the IQN and how ESXi is handling this. I deleted the ESXi host on the NAS and re-created it. A rescan of the storage devices showed the iSCSI LUNs. I then did the esxcfg-volume -l and mounted, using esxcfg-volume -M UUID (with the “M” rather than the “m” option), the two UUIDs. Bang, the datastores reappears. While the article is for upgrades and not reboots, my gut is that this problem will persist until the bug is squashed. I haven’t tested a reboot because this is a pain in the arse and I have other things I have to do.

From the Reddit post, there is now a KB article from VMware on this issue (iSCSI adapter IQN may change during the upgrade of ESXi 7.0 U1 (84339)). I didn’t see the workaround (I’ll try it if a patch not available and I have to shutdown the ESXi or NAS) but here is that workaround example from the article:

To work around the issue:
Prior to the upgrade, use the esxcli get and set commands to set the generated iSCSI adapter IQN explicitly. As the IQN is a user setting it won’t change after the upgrade.
Get the IQN details:
$ esxcli iscsi adapter get -A vmhba67


Set the IQN details:
$ esxcli iscsi adapter set -A vmhba67 -n


I couldn’t wait for the next time that I needed to reboot the ESXi server. That is probably a good idea given that I probably don’t want to have a number of things going on at the same time. I applied the VMware KB work around and then shutdown the VMs and rebooted the server.

SUCCESS! The iSCSI datastores automatically came up. A gin and tonic with lots of ice may be in order!

About Mike Pelley

Let’s see… A little about me… I’ve been around information technology since 1983 with computers such as DEC Rainbows (weird machine – the standard DOS couldn’t format its own floppy disks – remember them? – and I had to format them on a friend’s IBM PC) to Radio Shack TRS-80 to Apple ][e and Apple //c in the beginning. I have programmed in 8-bit assembly language on 6502, FORTRAN and COBOL on IBM System/370 (and I still hate JCL), VAX BASIC and COBOL (and a weird and massive WordPerfect 4.0 macro) on DEC VMS (Alpha), C/C++ on Digital Unix (ALPHA), and C/C++, Perl (it may be powerful but I still hate it), PHP on Linux (Red Hat, Centos, Ubuntu, etc.). I have work with databases such as Digital RDB (later to become Oracle RDB), Oracle DBMS, Microsoft SQL Server, MySQL and PostgreSQL on VAX, Alpha, Sun and Intel. Check out my professional profile and connect with me on LinkedIn. See I still think that Digital created some of the best ideas in the world: VAX clustering, DSSI disks (forerunner to SCSI) and the Alpha processor (first commercial 64-bit processor – Red Hat screamed on an Alpha!). DEC just could not seem to be able to give air conditioners away to someone lost in the Sahara Desert! VMware is one of the best ways to get the most out of an x64 server. And I have tried Oracle VM, Virtual Box and Microsoft Virtual Server. Outside of that I am a huge military history buff starting in the early 20th century. I love Ford Mustangs (my ’87 Mustang GT was awesome) and if I had the money I would have a Porsche 928S4. If I had a lot of money I would have a Porsche 911 Turbo. I also play too much AmrA 3 Exile mod. Over 5,000+ hours... I have a wonderful son, Cameron. I have a long suffering (Do you really need all that computer junk?) wife, Paula. I live in Paradise, Newfoundland and Labrador.
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