ESXi: Got no data from process

I hit an interesting issue the other day when attempting to reconfigure remote syslog on some ESXi hosts. What followed was an exercise on troubleshooting remote syslog on an ESXi host and I wanted to share some tips.

vsphere

It all started when I attempted to configure syslog on some ESXi hosts using PowerCLI. Here is what I saw:

Confused by the error, I attempted to perform the command on the ESXi host using esxcli:

This confirmed that the issue was not PowerCLI related. So what is going on and how can you fix it? Well, I was in a rush and had the luxury of rebooting the host so that is what I did. Even after reboot the issue appeared! So next it was time to actually troubleshoot the issue.

What you may or may not realize is that there is a hidden log file just for the ESXi syslog daemon. I started by tailing this file:

So it appears that the syslog process is stuck with a socket error. After some trial and error, I found that the following commands fixed the issue:

Yes, I know I am running the same two commands twice, but I found this to be necessary on some ESXi hosts for the change to take effect (possibly watchdog related). So what do the two commands do? First, the syslog daemon is killed and then syslog is reconfigured, which in turn starts syslog automatically. Upon running the above command, the syslog log file looked better:

Now, I still have not tracked down what causes the issue, but I have only seen it on ESXi 5.0/5.1 and only after a syslog misconfiguration or a host reconfiguration (e.g. move from one vCenter Server to another). For more information about this issue and similar ESXi syslog issues, see these links:

© 2014, Steve Flanders. All rights reserved.

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