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The VirtualCenter Server service fails to start with alarm errors after upgrading to vCenter Server 5.0 (2007231)

Symptoms

  • The VirtualCenter Server service fails to start after upgrading to vCenter Server 5.0
  • The VirtualCenter Server service fails to start with a win32 exception error and backtrace
  • The vminst.log (located in the %temp% folder) contains these entries:

    VMware VirtualCenter-build-455964: 10/12/11 19:16:22 Srvc_IsServiceRunning::done Service is NOT RUNNING
    VMware VirtualCenter-build-455964: 10/12/11 19:16:22 OpenSrvcManagers
    VMware VirtualCenter-build-455964: 10/12/11 19:16:22 OpenSrvcManager
    VMware VirtualCenter-build-455964: 10/12/11 19:16:22 OpenSrvcs
    VMware VirtualCenter-build-455964: 10/12/11 19:16:22 OpenSrvc
    VMware VirtualCenter-build-455964: 10/12/11 19:16:22 StartSrvc::NumArgs: 0
    VMware VirtualCenter-build-455964: 10/12/11 19:16:41 StartSrvc::ERROR_SERVICE_DEPENDENCY_FAIL The service depends on another service that has failed to start Error: 1068
    VMware VirtualCenter-build-455964: 10/12/11 19:16:41 Service could not be started.
    VMware VirtualCenter-build-455964: 10/12/11 19:16:41 Srvc_StartService::vctomcat service NOT STARTED Error: 1068
    VMware VirtualCenter-build-455964: 10/12/11 19:16:41 End Logging

  • The vim-im-msi.log file (located in the %temp% folder) contains these entries:

    Getting hit by the below, on upgrade and fresh installation:
    Action 19:16:22: VM_StartTomcatImmediate.
    Action start 19:16:22: VM_StartTomcatImmediate.
    MSI (c) (E0:C8) [19:16:22:142]: Invoking remote custom action. DLL: C:\Users\ADMINI~1\AppData\Local\Temp\2\MSICA21.tmp, Entrypoint: VMStartTomcatImmediate
    Action ended 19:16:41: VM_StartTomcatImmediate. Return value 3.
    MSI (c) (E0:B0) [19:16:41:565]: Doing action: SetupCompleteError
    Action 19:16:41: SetupCompleteError.


  • The vpxd.log may contain errors similar to:

    • [06056 verbose 'Default'] [AddAlarmToEntity] ALARM alarm-37 created on host-9
    • [06056 verbose 'Default'] [VpxdMoAlarmManager] Found both stateful stateless event expressions in the same alarm
    • [02296 warning 'Default'] [VpxUnhandledException] Win32 Exception (0xe06d7363) detected at 7FEFD11CACD

Cause

This issue occurs if an alarm from the previous installation has both stateful and stateless expressions. Each vCenter Server update adds new default alarms during the initial startup after an upgrade.

In addition, vCenter 5.0 modifies a set of existing alarms. The problematic alarms are:
  • Network connectivity lost (Stateful)
  • Network uplink redundancy lost (Stateful)
  • Network uplink redundancy degraded (Stateless)
The alarm causing this issue is most likely the alarm after the last alarm listed in the vpxd.log file. For example, if alarm-37 is created on host-9, the failing alarm is alarm-38.

Resolution

This issue has been resolved in VMware vCenter Server 5.0 Update 1, released March 13, 2012. To download this version, go to Download VMware vSphere.

If you are unable to upgrade, see the workaround below.

To work around this issue and remove the alarm:

  1. Take a backup of the vCenter Server database.

    Warning: Do not skip this step.

  2. Run these queries on the vCenter Server database:

    delete from VPX_ALARM_EXPRESSION where alarm_id = 38;
    delete from vpx_alarm_action where alarm_id = 38;
    delete from vpx_alarm where alarm_id = 38;


    Where alarm_id = 38 is the number of the alarm based on your vpxd log.

    Note: The alarm_id may change depending upon the error seen last in the vpxd logs.

  3. Start the VMware VirtualCenter Server service.

Additional Information

Tags

vcenter-server-service-fails vcenter-alarm

See Also

Update History

03/21/2012 - Added this issue is resolved with link to download center

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