How to Install VMware vSphere 5.5 (ESXi 5.5) Host

VMware ESXi (formerly ESX) is an enterprise-class, type-1 hypervisor developed by VMware to host the virtual machine. VMware ESXi 5.5 is included in the VMware vSphere 5.5 that was released on September 22, 2013. This post will explain how to install VMware ESXi 5.5 host. These steps has been prepared from the screenshot of the my home lab server, HP Micro Server N40L. Please note that ESXi will install and run only on servers with 64-bit x86 CPUs.

1. Download the VMware ESXi 5.5 software(iso image) from vmware website that can either be install via bootable USB or DVD disk.

2. Attached the ESXi DVD/Bootable USB installer to your physical server hardware and start to follow typical interactive installation. Press Enter to proceed.

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3. Press F11 to accept and continue.

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4. Next is to select the storage device. The screenshot was captured from my VMware Home lab server, therefor the disk type will be display as VMware virtual.

In the real physical server you will see the actual storage type such as ATA, SAS under Local and FC-SAN under Remote if it is configured. In most of the cases, the ESXi will be install to the local host disk. After storage device has been selected, press Enter to continue.

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5. Next step is to select the Keyboard Layout. US will be the Default and press Enter to continue.

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6. Set the root password for ESXi and press Enter to continue.

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7. This warning are expected because my home lab server was running on VMware ESXi 5.x on top of a physical ESXi 5.x and the CPU was AMD chipset which does not support the AMD-V attributes. Press Enter to continue.

On the actual ESXi 5.x physocal server installation with Intel based motherboards, you will see the option of Intel VT-x and Intel VT-d.

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8. Finally, You will see the final question whether to proceed the installation or to abort the installation. Press F11 to proceed.

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9. The installer will reformats and partitions the target disk and installs the ESXi boot image. If you have not installed ESXi on the target disk before, all data located on the drive is overwritten, including hardware vendor partitions, operating system partitions, and associated data.

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10. Installation of the ESXi 5.5 update1 has been completed. Press Enter will trigger a reboot.

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11. After the reboot you should be confronted with the VMware ESX “Direct User Console Interface” (DUCI) and able to see the VMKernel Release Build number.

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