Last week I had noticed several folks were having issues deploying the latest vSphere Integrated Containers (vIC) 1.1 OVA using PowerCLI. The following error message was observed when using the Get-OvfConfiguration cmdlet which is needed before importing an OVF/OVA:

PowerCLI doesn't support SHA256 hash codes in OVF manifest

As you probably have guessed, the issue is that PowerCLI currently does not support the SHA256 hashing algorithm, which the latest vIC OVA was generated with. I suspect this is probably related to the change with OVFTool 4.2 which now defaults to SHA256 which also has some implications on which vSphere UI you can use to import OVF/OVAs which I had written about here. As of today, PowerCLI currently only supports SHA1 and anything greater will not work. I have already reported this to Jake Robinson who is the PM for PowerCLI and hopefully this will get addressed in a future update.

In the meantime, you can deploy vIC using either the vSphere Web Client and/or ESXi Embedded Host Client, both support SHA256. If you wish to Automate the deployment of vIC, the only option right now is to convert the OVA from SHA256 to SHA1. You can easily do this by using OVFTool which is available on all OS platforms. If you already have downloaded the vCenter Server Appliance (VCSA) ISO, you can even make use of its bundled OVFTool in case you did not want to install OVFTool (You can find it under vcsa/ovftool in extracted ISO).

To convert the hashing algorithm, we just need to pass in our desire hash to the --shaAlgorithm parameter.

ovftool.exe --shaAlgorithm=SHA1 C:\Users\primp\Desktop\vic-v1.1.1_56a309fb.ova C:\Users\primp\Desktop\vic-v1.1.1_56a309fb-SHA1.ova

Once the conversion is done, you can delete the original vIC OVA and then use PowerCLI to import the new OVA just like you would with any other OVF/OVA!

One thought on “Workaround to deploy vSphere Integrated Containers 1.1 OVA using PowerCLI (SHA256 not supported)

  1. Thanks William,

    As of PowerCLI 10.1 you can now import appliances with SHA-256 and SHA-512 manifest file digests.

Thanks for the comment!