After you identify the symptoms of the problem, determine which components in your setup are affected, which components might be causing the problem, and which components are not involved.

To define the problem space in an implementation of vSphere, be aware of the components present. In addition to VMware software, consider third-party software in use and which hardware is being used with the VMware virtual hardware.

Recognizing the characteristics of the software and hardware elements and how they can impact the problem, you can explore general problems that might be causing the symptoms.

  • Misconfiguration of software settings
  • Failure of physical hardware
  • Incompatibility of components

Break down the process and consider each piece and the likelihood of its involvement separately. For example, a case that is related to a virtual disk on local storage is probably unrelated to third-party router configuration. However, a local disk controller setting might be contributing to the problem. If a component is unrelated to the specific symptoms, you can probably eliminate it as a candidate for solution testing.

Think about what changed in the configuration recently before the problems started. Look for what is common in the problem. If several problems started at the same time, you can probably trace all the problems to the same cause.