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XP can’t connect via vSphere 5.5 C# Client

 

Windows XP is going away, but yet quite a lot of people still use this for various reasons. Something that might pop up is after upgrading to vSphere 5.5, you install the vSphere client on your XP machine and try to connect, only to get an error:

An unknown connection error occurred. (The Client could not send a complete request to the server. (The underlying connection was closed: An unexpected error occurred on a send.

Now, vSphere 5.5 is, for the most part, fully managed through the web client. Although there are some things, like update manager, that still require the C# client.

Why is this happening?

vSphere 5.5 uses the Open SSL library, which, for security, is configured by default to accept only connections that use strong cipher suites. On Windows XP, the vSphere Client does not use strong cipher suites to connect with vCenter Server.

The solution:

So, how do we get around this?  Well, the best answer would be to upgrade to Vista or higher. Obviously, if you haven’t yet, there is a reason.

On 64bit version of XP and 2003, simply install this hotfix from Microsoft.  If you are using a 32bit version, there is no hotfix, and we need to edit the vCenter server to allow older encryption methods.

On the vCenter server:

  • Browse to c:\programdata\vmware\vmware virtual center\
  • Edit vpxd.cfg in wordpad
  • Add the <cipherList>ALL</cipherList> parameter between the <ssl></ssl> section, under <vmacore>, under <config>

Example:

<config>

<vmacore>

<ssl>
<cipherList>ALL</cipherList>
<useCompression>true</useCompression>
</ssl>
</vmacore>

  •  Restart the VMware Virtual Center service, and you will now be able to connect.

vSphere Appliance:

  • Follow the same steps as above, but, you can find the vpxd.cfg file under /etc/vmware-vpx/

 

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