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vSphere 5.1 Performance History Not Retained Past 30 Days

I was made aware of a KB 2042164 describing an issue where vSphere 5.1 vCenter Systems will not keep performance data past 30 days, this KB has now been replaced with KB 2042009. This article will briefly discuss the symptoms, seriousness and solutions.

Symptoms

The symptoms of this problem are easily identifiable:

  • You will only see a maximum of 30 days data in the ‘past year’ performance view in vCenter
  • Only one month of performance history appears when trying to see the past year in Advanced Performance

Please note that this issue will impact systems that have been upgraded to vSphere 5.1 as well as fresh installs of vSphere 5.1.

Seriousness

This issue shouldn’t be particularly serious or impact you greatly unless you rely heavily on the past year views in vCenter statistics for trending data. The reason I say it shouldn’t be that serious is that most tools used these days for vCenter performance data trending (such as vCenter Operations, vFoglight and others) take feeds from the real time data out of vCenter server and store it separately. Also VMware has recommended for some time that the past year performance views have their statistics level set to level 1 or level 2, so the granularity of data over those time periods was not that great, so you’re not really losing much. Now that vCenter Operations Manager Foundation is included with vSphere 5.1 Free of Charge there is even less of a reason to rely on the past year view in vCenter itself.

Solutions

The issue has been caused by an error in one of the vCenter statistics rollup jobs stored procedures and has been identified by VMware, there is now a fix available. You should review KB article http://kb.vmware.com/kb/2042009.

Even though this problem is now fixed I would strongly recommend that you download and install vCenter Operations Manager 5.6. The Foundation Edition is Free of Charge for every customer that has a fully licensed version of vSphere with current Support subscription. However I would strongly encourage you to look at the other editions and compare the features for yourself and decide if one of the more advanced editions is right for you. You should visit the vCenter Operations Management Suite Compare Editions Page. Even at the Advanced Edition Level vCenter Operations Manager Suite is very affordable when compared to most enterprise monitoring systems of the same capabilities.

VMware has in the past provided updates to the stored procedures for the statistics rollup jobs as a download as part of the KB articles to fix particular problems. It’s easy enough for a DBA or Admin to apply the new procedures, of course having taken backups prior and with due diligence and care. This is what VMware has done in this instance as well. The new stored procedures are attached to the new KB article.

Duncan Epping has also written about this issue in his article vSphere 5.1 Performance History issue!

This post first appeared on the Long White Virtual Clouds blog at longwhiteclouds.comby Michael Webster +. Copyright © 2012 – IT Solutions 2000 Ltd and Michael Webster +. All rights reserved. Not to be reproduced for commercial purposes without written permission.

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