Installing VMWare Tools on JunOS SPACE 15.2 or older

[Edit 2017-05-04] The below is still valid for JunOS SPACE 15.2 or older. From JunOS SPACE 16.1 on, you can use “Open VM Tools” instead.

JunOS SPACE, Juniper’s management platform for JunOS devices (switches, routers, firewalls) does not come with gcc or kernel-headers. Installing VMWare Tools from a mounted ISO via vmware-install.pl is not all that successful. Happily, VMWare still provides RPM versions of those tools. SPACE 15.2 is built on CentOS 5, which in turn is a RHEL 5 clone.

Be sure to use the VMWare Tools package that matches the version of CentOS your SPACE is running.

1) Start by downloading the RPMs for VMWare Tools on RHEL 5. You’ll want the following (or their current equivalent):

vmware-tools-core-10.0.6-1.el5.x86_64.rpm
vmware-tools-esx-nox-10.0.6-1.el5.x86_64.rpm
vmware-tools-foundation-10.0.6-1.el5.x86_64.rpm
vmware-tools-guestlib-10.0.6-1.el5.x86_64.rpm
vmware-tools-libraries-nox-10.0.6-1.el5.x86_64.rpm
vmware-tools-plugins-autoUpgrade-10.0.6-1.el5.x86_64.rpm
vmware-tools-plugins-deployPkg-10.0.6-1.el5.x86_64.rpm
vmware-tools-plugins-grabbitmqProxy-10.0.6-1.el5.x86_64.rpm
vmware-tools-plugins-guestInfo-10.0.6-1.el5.x86_64.rpm
vmware-tools-plugins-hgfsServer-10.0.6-1.el5.x86_64.rpm
vmware-tools-plugins-powerOps-10.0.6-1.el5.x86_64.rpm
vmware-tools-plugins-timeSync-10.0.6-1.el5.x86_64.rpm
vmware-tools-plugins-vix-10.0.6-1.el5.x86_64.rpm
vmware-tools-plugins-vmbackup-10.0.6-1.el5.x86_64.rpm
vmware-tools-services-10.0.6-1.el5.x86_64.rpm
vmware-tools-vgauth-10.0.6-1.el5.x86_64.rpm

That list might change with newer versions of the tools and of RHEL, of course. When in doubt, grab just the vmware-tools-esx-nox package, try to install it, and take a note of all the dependent packages it wants, then download those too.

2) scp the lot to SPACE, say to /var/tmp. While WinSCP is unhappy with the shell the admin user runs on, command-line scp does not care and will work. Choose any version you like: The one that comes with Putty, the one that comes with Cygwin, an Ubuntu one on Windows 10, or any other. And if you’re running OSX or Linux, you can feel extra-smug because you have scp as part of your base OS.

3) Install those RPMs. Now, you could install the GPG key they are signed with, but if you trust that you got them from VMWare, in an unaltered form, then just:

yum install --nogpgcheck vmware-tools*rpm

If there are dependency errors, download the missing packages as well and try again.

5) Satisfy yourself that vmtoolsd is running:

service vmware-tools-services status

 

vSphere should now be reporting that SPACE is running “VMtools 3rd party/independent”. And that’s all there is to it.

The kmod portion of the tools won’t install, by the way – but then it’s not needed.

 

Resolving JunOS Pulse install issue on Windows

On my own Windows 7 machine, I had an odd error when attempting to install JunOS Pulse 5. The installer would start with “copying new files”, then “rolling back action” and would finally tell me that “the wizard was interrupted before JunOS Pulse could be completely installed.”

Usually, when something odd like this happens, the remedy is to uninstall everything Juniper. Which I did. Network Connect, Host Checker, Setup Client, Installer Service, Pulse Collaboration, I got rid of them all. Which didn’t resolve my issue.

Now, this machine has had various versions of Juniper-something installed on it over the years. Even the OAC client at one point. So it was likely that something was lingering that was causing this issue.

I had seen something similar at a customer of mine. They resolved it by re-imagining the machine. I didn’t want to be quite so thorough.

The solution turned out to be to open a command line “as Administrator”, run “pnputil -e > pnplist.txt”, find everything in there that has the name “Juniper” in it, then run “pnputil -d oemXX.inf” for each entry, where “XX” is the actual number of the entry.

This got rid of a lingering driver in the Windows driver store, which was keeping the Pulse driver from being installed. After this little bit of surgery, Pulse installed without complications.

Before reaching for pnputil, be sure that the previous step, uninstalling everything that has to do with Juniper MAG/SA client software, has already been taken. These drivers are components of the client software. Pulling them out from under that client software is not desirable.

I’ve found a forum mention that pnputil helped with a Network Connect install issue where a Juniper driver had gotten orphaned. This remedy is not specific to Pulse alone.