Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Finally, ESXi

Way back in Oct 2011, I wrote a series about building a bot machine and I wrote that one did not need Windows or even Linux to be the host operating system; as a friend and me were looking at VMware’s offering of ESXi.  I said that I would do a followup once everything was up and running.  That has never happened.


We discovered that ESXi is particularly picky around the hardware it runs on and in our case, ESXi did not like the network card we were planning on using.  So, we shelved the project in favor of other projects.

Fast forward about 15 months and we managed to obtain several real ESXi machines from a business which was upgrading its servers.  So we had obtained three (3) of these machines and each of us got one.  It was fairly obvious what the purpose of the one I obtained was going to be…  This machine is going to run two (2) of my bots while giving all of us some much needed real world experience in working with this vital part of business infrastructure today.

We decided that it would be best to do a clean installation, so we booted off a CD and installed ESXi like any other operating system.  Did a few tweaks to increase optimization and then boot.

ESXi has an interesting screen when it is done booting… It just shows a black screen with an IP address.  There is an option to go inside and tweak a few settings but that is it.  How do I install the bot?  How do I start the bot?  How do I even know if they are running as there is no “real” video card inside this ESXi machine?  These and other questions will be answered next time.

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