vCenter 5.1 XenDesktop 5.6FP1 and Host Connections

We recently upgrade to vCenter Server 5.1 and had an issue with our XenDesktop Desktop Controllers. Version 5.1 significantly changes the authentication method with vCenter by breaking out authentication to a separate service called the vCenter Single Sign On service.

When viewing the information in the XD Desktop Studio the host connection to our vCenter server had a red X indicating there was an issue connecting to the host. The XD Host Service was started so that wasn't the problem.

Login to the query service failed in vCenter Search

After patching our vCenter Server recently we were no longer able to use the "Search Inventory" box to search our virtual infrastructure. When we tried we would receive the following error:

Login to the query service failed. Unable to connect ...

The full error text has been abbreviated.

Deploying a Window Server 2008 R2 VMware Template and Joining It To A Domain

Have you been pulling your hair out trying to get a Windows Server 2008 R2 virtual machine deployed from a vCenter template to join a Windows Active Directory domain? Fear not, the solution is at hand and is realtively simple.

After reading the following thread on the VMware Communities site:

I found out that one needs to use the FQDN of the AD domain and NOT the NetBIOS name of the domain, and also the user principal name for a user with proper permissions to join computers to the domain.

Problem Deploying a Windows Server 2008 R2 VM Guest using a KMS Server with VMware vCenter

We've been having problems deploying Windows Server 2008 R2 virtual machines from templates using the VMware vCenter and it's built in guest customization.

It appears that there may be an issue either with Microsoft's built-in sysprep utility in 2008 R2, or with VMware's vCenter guest customization wizard when using a Key Management Server, or KMS. A KMS is part of Microsoft's Volume Activation 2.0 as described here - and in this TechNet article -

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