At last my creature it lives – adventures with Lab Management and VLAN tags

After much delay I have at last got our internal Lab Management running on ‘real’ hardware as opposed to it’s initial home on a demo rig PC. We have just been too busy to find the time to reconfigure and redeploy our own kit! You know how it is ‘a plumber’s house is full of drippy taps’. That said I of course still want more hardware, as soon as you start to build up test environments you eat Hyper-V server resources very quickly; memory seems to be my most pressing current limitation on how much I can run at the same time.

You also have to be patient with Lab Management, though it provides many features to ease the life of the test team it cannot work magic. It still takes a while to copy tens of Gigabytes around the network. Though when you rollback an environment to reset a test, though it can take a few minutes you realise how that is much better that is than the older disk imaging techniques you would have to have used. You realise all the time you spend getting the base environment snapshots right is a great investment in time.

The one thing that caused me a few problems was that we use VLAN tagging on our switches. This means that Hyper-V hosted VMs need to have a suitable VLAN tag assigned, else they cannot see the resources on our LAN. This becomes a problem when using network isolation in Lab Management as when the new environment is created the extra adaptor that is automatically added has no VLAN tag, so does not work. However, luckily the fix is simple, you do have to manually set the tag on the VMs network settings via Hyper-V Manager or SCVMM (as far as I can see you cannot do it MTM)

So now I am off to run some test in my nice new environments, what fun.