VxRail manager utilizes the PTAgent running on the ESXi hosts as part of a VxRail cluster in order to pull hardware related information from the host. If you are experiencing host visibility or connectivity issues in VxRail manager or vCenter server then a good starting point is to check the PTAgent status.

PTAgent is bundled with VxRail code releases as part of the Dell PowerEdge components. ESXCLI can be used to determine the PTAgent version running on the VxRail host. Connecting to the ESXi host via SSH @root and running the following cmd:

esxcli software vib list | grep dellptagent

vxrailptagentstatus1

Check Platform Service version:

esxcli software vib list | grep platform

Check status of the Platform Service and restart if needed:

/etc/init.d/vxrail-pservice status

/etc/init.d/vxrail-pservice restart

Check platform service log:

tail -f /var/log/platform_svc.log

Checking PTAgent status and restart if needed:

/etc/init.d/DellPTAgent status

/etc/init.d/DellPTAgent restart

vxrailptagentstatus3

Also confirm PTAgent is running via ESXCLI:

esxcli vxrail agent get

If agent get returns a value of false then it is worth performing a cold reset of iDRAC; this can be done directly from the ESXi console (other reset options include iDRAC GUI or the physical reset button) allow approx ~15 mins for reset to complete:

/opt/dell/DellPTAgent/tools/ipmitool_static mc reset cold

physicalviewmissing4

Confirming VxRail Agent status is returning an initialization status of ‘true’:

physicalviewmissing6

Confirm ESXi is communicating with Integrated Dell Remote Access Controller(iDRAC) Service Module (iSM), PTAgent has a dependency on this service called iSM and the following cli checks iSM status on the ESXi host:

/etc/init.d/dcism-netmon-watchdog status

The iSM service can be restarted using this cmd:

/etc/init.d/dcism-netmon-watchdog restart

vxrailptagentstatus2

Confirm iSM comms:

ping 169.254.0.1

Also worth checking if root user can login to iDRAC via SSH from ESXi:

ssh root@169.254.0.1

When a node is added to a VxRail cluster its PTAgent runs in listening mode at its configured IPv4 address using port 8086:

esxcli network ip connection list | grep LISTEN | grep Dell

vxrailptagentstatus4

Checking if the process ‘294811835’ is running:

ps -s | grep 294811835

vxrailptagentstatus5

Confirm presence of both vxpsvc & PTAdmin users:

/opt/vxrail/tools/ipmitool user list 1

Check vxpsvc has SSH comms to iDRAC:

/opt/vxrail/bin/remotecmd -oStrictHostKeyChecking=no -oUserKnownHostsFile=/dev/null -oPubkeyAuthentication=yes -oPasswordAuthentication=no -i /etc/ssh/ssh_host_rsa_key -l vxpsvc 169.254.0.1

Note: the vxpsvc a/c password is rotated every 6hours while the PTAdmin a/c is auto-rotated every 60days. Tail the platform_svc.log to check if ESXi (vxpsvc_ptagent_op) and iDRAC (vxpsvc) users get their passwords updated:
# tail -f /var/run/log/platform_svc.log

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