Summary Checklist

  • Check Virtualisation Technology is enabled in the BIOS
  • Download and install latest version of ESXi
  • Patch
  • Configure (static IP, DNS, NTP, vSwitch, root password and license)
  • Install VMA
  • Configure Hardware Health Monitoring

Step 1: Installation:

  • Check that “virtualization technology” is enabled in the BIOS
  • If you need to store files greater than 256GB then I would recommend creating 2 virtual disks in the RAID controller BIOS. One for the OS and one to use as a data store. Note that by default the installation of ESXi will format the virtual disk with a 1MB block size.
  • Remember to check that virtualisation support is enable in the BIOS.

Where possible download the vendors version of ESXi. For example Dell provide their own customized ISO that contains Dell specific settings for SNMP etc.

(Alternatively you can use the Dell Uniform Server Configurator – you will still need the Dell ESXi ISO however.

After downloading the ISO from the Dell Website I have booted the server off it and installed ESXi.

After reboot you will get a screen similar to the below showing the current IP address of the ESXi box. In this case it has picked up an IP address from DHCP.

Step 2 – Patching

I recommend running the VMware vSphere Host Update utility to install the latest patches.


Step 3 – Configure

If you haven’t got the Vmware VI client installed on your PC already you will then want to download the VI client to enable you to manage this server. You can get this by opening a web browser and entering in the IP of the ESXi server (as shown in the diagram above).

Click on the link highlighted above and install the VI client. Note that this downloads the client from the web and not from this server. It may take a few minutes.

Once installed open the vi client and connect to the ESXi server IP as shown below. Note the default username is root with no password.

You may now want to customise your install.

Set static IP:

Note that if the static IP is different you will need to re-launch the vi client and connect to the new IP.

Configure DNS:

Add other NICs to vSwitch:

This will improve performance and add a degree of fault tolerance with the network cards.

Setup NTP:

Note that VMs will likely pickup the time from the ESXi server so it is important the time is correct

Change Root Password:

License VMware:

You will need to Registerwith Vmware and they will email you a license. Once you have this you can enter this on the below screen.


Step 4 – Post Installation

I recommend installing the vMA and setting up hardware monitoring. Please click on the hyperlinks for more information.

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