DefinIT

Unable to connect NSX to Lookup Service when using a vSphere 6 subordinate certificate authority (VMCA)

After deploying a new vSphere 6 vCenter Server Appliance (VCSA) and configuring the Platform Services Controller (PSC) to act as a subordinate Certificate Authority (CS), I was unable to register the NSX Manager to the Lookup Service. Try saying that fast after a pint or two!?

Attempting to register NSX to the Lookup Service would result in the following error:

NSX Management Service operation failed.( Initialization of Admin Registration Service Provider failed. Root Cause: Error occurred while registration of lookup service, com.vmware.vim.vmomi.core.exception.CertificateValidationException: Server certificate chain not verified )

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Initially I thought that the NSX manager needed to somehow import the VMCA certificate to trust the Lookup Service certificate, however after reaching out to the NBSU ambassadors list I had a reply from Julienne Pham, a Technical Solutions Architect and CTO Ambassador with VMware Professional Services, who pointed me to the correct solution.

It seems that changing the PSC and vCenter certificates (even with the Certificate Manager tool) does not correctly update the service registration information. To quote VMware KB 2109074:

…the vCenter Server system uses a new certificate, but the service registration information on the Platform Services Controller is not updated

To resolve this issue, we need to use the ls_update_certs.py script to register the services correctly. (more…)

VCSA 5.5 Web Client fails to log on with “SSL certificate verification failed”

This had me scratching my head, what seemed to be a common problem wasn’t fixed by the common solution. It was actually my fault – too familiar with the product and setting things up too quickly to test.

I installed a VCSA 5.5 instance in my lab as a secondary site for some testing and during the process found I couldn’t log on to the web client – it failed with the error:

Failed to connect to VMware Lookup Service https://vCVA_IP_address:7444/lookupservice/sdk – SSL certificate verification failed.

There are several VMware KB articles about this (2033338 and 2058430) which point to regenerating the SSL certificate as the solution to this – unfortunately in my case it didn’t seem to work.

I had a closer look at the certificate being generated and noticed that the Subject Name was malformed “CN=vc-02.definit.loca” – that led me to the network config of the VCSA. I’d entered the FQDN into the “host name” field, which was in turn being passed to the certificate generation, truncated and throwing the SSL error. Changing the FQDN back to the host name “VC-02” and regenerating the certificate resolved the issue.

If you do have to follow that process, remember to disable the SSL certificate regeneration after it’s fixed – otherwise you’ll suffer slow boot times!

I’ll put that one down to over-familiarity with the product!