This is a client you install on your workstation to view and manage the VMWare infrastructure (including all virtual machines, data stores, hosts, clusters, etc).
Installing vSphere and connecting
- Download the appropriate vSphere client installer from your vSphere server by pointing a web browser to its IP address. Install, then when prompted enter the vSphere server's hostname and your domain credentials.
- You can also use vSphere to connect directly to the hypervisors, but it's best to connect to the vSphere server, which lets you view the entire virtual environment.
Windows activation after p-to-v
- When demoing Windows Server VM's, you may need to rearm the trial period counter which will give you 60 days before entering a valid product key.
- Check activation status:
Rearm the trial period counter:
- This is an optional service (with a system tray icon) that can be installed on any virtual machine to improve performance when viewing the machine's "Console" from inside the vSphere client).
Upgrading VMWare Tools on a Windows VM
- The install/upgrade process will automatically reboot the VM when it completes, so make sure no one is logged-into the server (and that a reboot won't interrupt critical functions during work hours).
- While the vm is powered-on, open your vSphere client, right-click on the vm, then go to "Guest", then "Install/Upgrade VMWare Tools". When prompted, tell it to install with with default options.
- The "tasks" pane at the bottom of vSphere will show the task as "in progress". After 1-3 minutes, the vm will automatically reboot.
Upgrading VMWare Tools on a Linux VM
- This is more complicated - I think it can't be done automatically from the vSphere client. Depending on your Linux distribution and version, you may need additional repos, etc.
- Ref: http://pubs.vmware.com/vsphere-51/index.jsp#com.vmware.vmtools.install.doc/GUID-08BB9465-D40A-4E16-9E15-8C016CC8166F.html
Time issues on client VM's
- Sometimes resizing disk or reverting to snapshot can cause the host time to sync backwards to an incorrect time at every boot. I've seen this on a testing VM after restoring from a snapshot: at each boot the time jumped backwards about 15 minutes, and then synced with the DC during startup (as shown in eventvwr entries during boot-up).
- The solution is to add some lines in the VM's config settings. See here: http://kb.vmware.com/selfservice/microsites/search.do?cmd=displayKC&docType=kc&externalId=1189&sliceId=1&docTypeID=DT_KB_1_1&dialogID=120750680&stateId=0%200%20128332383
ESXi Shell Commands
Display system info (server model and service tag, etc)
esxcli system hostname get