We had this weird issue at work yesterday wherein you could not login to the vCenter server by entering a username/ password, but could if you just ticked on the “Use windows session credentials” checkbox.
The issue got resolved eventually by stopping the “VMware Secure Token Service”, restarting the “VMware VirtualCenter Server” service, and then starting the “VMware Secure Token Service”. No idea why that made a difference though, and whether that actually fixed things or was just coincidental. Around the same time I had seen some VMware Tools errors so I (a) upgraded the tools, (b) moved the vCenter VM to a different host, (c) saw that one of these had caused issues with the network driver so I had to uninstall and reinstall the tools and then reset the secure channel with the domain (since when the vCenter VM came up it didn’t have network connectivity).
So it was a bit of a damper actually. Nothing more frustrating than spending a lot of time troubleshooting something and not really figuring out what the issue is. On the plus side at least the issue got sorted, but it leaves me uneasy not knowing what really went wrong and whether it will re-occur.
In the event logs there were many entries like these:
An account failed to log on.
Security ID: SYSTEM
Account Name: VCENTER01$
Account Domain: MYDOMAIN
Logon ID: 0x3e7
Logon Type: 3
Account For Which Logon Failed:
Security ID: NULL SID
Account Name: SomeAccount
Account Domain: MYDOMAIN.COM
Failure Reason: Unknown user name or bad password.
Sub Status: 0xc0000064
Caller Process ID: 0xe20
Caller Process Name: E:\Program Files\VMware\Infrastructure\VMware\CIS\vmware-sso\VMwareIdentityMgmtService.exe
Workstation Name: VCENTER01
Source Network Address: –
Source Port: –
Detailed Authentication Information:
Logon Process: Advapi
Authentication Package: Negotiate
Transited Services: –
Package Name (NTLM only): –
Key Length: 0
Here’s what the error codes mean –
NULL SIDsuggests that the account that was being authenticated could not be identified
0xC000006Dmeans that authentication failed due to bad credentials
0xC0000064means that the requested user name does not exist.
- Logon type 3 means the request was received from the network (but given the request originated from “server”, suggests that the request was looped back from itself over the network stack.
Not that it throws much light on what’s happening.
For info – this KB article lists the useful vCenter log files. I looked at the
vpxd-xxxx.log file which had some entries like these –
2016-06-06T16:08:18.046+01:00 [02856 error ‘[SSO]’ opID=138a737d] [UserDirectorySso] AcquireToken exception: class SsoClient::CommunicationException(No connection could be made because the target machine actively refused it)
2016-06-06T16:08:18.046+01:00 [02856 error ‘authvpxdUser’ opID=138a737d] Failed to authenticate user <mydomain\someaccount>
This file is under
C:\ProgramData\VMware\VMware VirtualCenter\Logs by the way.
I also found messages like these –
2016-06-06T10:17:59.226+01:00 [06952 error ‘[SSO]’ opID=1790eabb] [UserDirectorySso] AcquireToken exception: class SsoClient::SsoException(Failed to parse Group Identity value: `\Authentication authority asserted identity’; domain or group missing)
Two more logs I looked at are
C:\ProgramData\VMware\CIS\logs\vmware-sso\vmware-sts-idmd.log and some files under
C:\ProgramData\VMware\CIS\runtime\VMwareSTS\logs. In case of the latter location I just sorted by the recently modified timestamp and found some logs to look at. I focused on one called
ssoAdminServer.log. This file had a few entries like these –
[2016-06-06 12:19:08,987 pool-11-thread-1 ERROR com.vmware.identity.admin.server.ims.impl.PrincipalManagementImpl] Idm client exception
com.vmware.identity.idm.IDMException: Invalid group name format for [\Authentication authority asserted identity]
The vSphere Web Client gives an error message “
Cannot Parse Group Information” – which too is a symptom if you install vCenter on a 2012 server with a 2012 DC. Moreover it applies to vCenter 5.5 GA, which is what we are on, so all the symptoms point to that issue but it is not so in our case. :(
Back to the
vmware-sts-idmd.log, that had entries like these –
2016-06-06 09:00:26,089 WARN [ActiveDirectoryProvider] obtainDcInfo for domain [VCENTER01] failed Failed to get domain controller information for VCENTER01(dwError – 1355 – ERROR_NO_SUCH_DOMAIN)
2016-06-06 09:00:26,090 WARN [ActiveDirectoryProvider] obtainDcInfo for domain [VCENTER01] failed Failed to get domain controller information for VCENTER01(dwError – 1355 – ERROR_NO_SUCH_DOMAIN)
2016-06-06 09:00:26,091 ERROR [ValidateUtil] resolved group name=[\Authentication authority asserted identity] is invalid: not a valid netbios name format
2016-06-06 09:00:26,092 INFO [ActiveDirectoryProvider] resolved group name=[\Authentication authority asserted identity] is invalid: not a valid netbios name format
2016-06-06 09:02:53,005 INFO [IdentityManager] Failed to find principal [SomeAccount@mydomain.tld] as FSP group in tenant [vsphere.local]
2016-06-06 09:02:53,008 INFO [IdentityManager] Failed to find FSP user or gorup [SomeAccount@mydomain.tld]’s nested parent groups in tenant [vsphere.local]
2016-06-06 09:02:53,013 ERROR [IdentityManager] Failed to find nested parent groups of principal [SomeAccount@mydomain.tld] in tenant [vsphere.local]
2016-06-06 09:02:53,013 ERROR [ServerUtils] Exception ‘java.lang.IllegalStateException: Invalid group name format for [\Authentication authority asserted identity]’
java.lang.IllegalStateException: Invalid group name format for [\Authentication authority asserted identity]
at sun.reflect.GeneratedMethodAccessor37.invoke(Unknown Source)
at sun.reflect.DelegatingMethodAccessorImpl.invoke(Unknown Source)
at java.lang.reflect.Method.invoke(Unknown Source)
at sun.rmi.server.UnicastServerRef.dispatch(Unknown Source)
at sun.rmi.transport.Transport$1.run(Unknown Source)
at sun.rmi.transport.Transport$1.run(Unknown Source)
at java.security.AccessController.doPrivileged(Native Method)
at sun.rmi.transport.Transport.serviceCall(Unknown Source)
at sun.rmi.transport.tcp.TCPTransport.handleMessages(Unknown Source)
at sun.rmi.transport.tcp.TCPTransport$ConnectionHandler.run0(Unknown Source)
at sun.rmi.transport.tcp.TCPTransport$ConnectionHandler.run(Unknown Source)
at java.util.concurrent.ThreadPoolExecutor.runWorker(Unknown Source)
at java.util.concurrent.ThreadPoolExecutor$Worker.run(Unknown Source)
at java.lang.Thread.run(Unknown Source)
Again, something to do with DC/ domain … but what!? Found this blog post too that suggested the same.
For my reference, here’s a KB article listing all the SSO log files. And this is a useful blog post in case I happen upon a similar issue later (the case of the flapping VMware Secure Token Service). As is this KB article on an SSO facade error.