Tag Archives: VMware

vTracker does now include Tools and SDKs

To stay up to date with VMware product releases you can use my vTracker since about one year. vTracker is a service provided by virten.net that notifies about new product versions using a website and a RSS Feed with daily updates.

This week I noticed that an update from a SDK that I was waiting for was released 3 weeks ago. The main purpose of my vTracker was to get quickly notified about updates, and this should not be limited to products like ESXi or vCenter but also for Tools and SDKs like PowerCLI, Perl SDK, VMRC and VMware Tools (10).

Tools and SDKs are now included in my vTracker

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VMware vSphere 6.0 Download Available

Today VMware has made the bits available for everyone to download.

Updated: ESXi Release and Build Number History
Updated: VMware Product Latest Version

VMware vSphere 6.0 Download

Longest releace cycle since vSphere 4.0
With 536 days, the ever shortening product release cycles have been interrupted. vSphere 6.0 had a long closed and open beta phase to hunt for bugs. Let's hope for smooth upgrades in the next couple of weeks.


ESX Release Date Days since
prior release
6.0 2015-03-12 536
5.5 2013-09-22 376
5.1 2012-09-11 384
5.0 2011-08-24 407
4.1 2010-07-13 418
4.0 2009-05-21 456
3.5 2008-02-20 615
3.0 2006-06-15 563
2.5 2004-11-29 244
2.1 2004-03-30 253
2.0 2003-07-21 434
1.5 2002-05-13 416
1.0 2001-03-23


VMware ESX History Diagramvmware-esxi-build-history-2015

Get Notified About New VMware Products

If you want to stay up to date with VMware product releases (vSphere 6 GA is close) you might find vTracker useful. vTracker is a service provided by virten.net that watches for VMware releases. All products are listed at this site. There is also a RSS Feed with daily updates when new product versions are available.

Why this?
You can subscribe to product updates in the profile section at my.vmware.com, but this actually does not work for me. I subscribed to all products, but never got mails. Beyond that I prefer a RSS feeds, instead of emails.
my-vmware-product subscriptions

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AMD CPU EVC Matrix (VMware Enhanced vMotion Compatibility)

Enhanced vMotion Compatibility (EVC) simplifies vMotion compatibility across CPU generations. EVC automatically configures server CPUs with AMD-V Extended Migration technologies to be compatible with older servers. I've created a table with a quick overview about EVC Modes with their appropriate CPU Series and Codenames used by AMD to denote their CPUs.

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vSphere 5 Homelab – ESXi on HP Microserver Gen8

Hewlett Packard has updated its widely distributed Microserver Series to Gen8. This extremely affordable server which was initially made for SMB and home servers has become very popular in the virtualization scene. Due to its low price and power consumption you can find this system in many virtualization home labs. The Generation 8 Microserver (Gen8 or G8) comes with more power, upgraded ports and an integrated iLO.


The HP Microserver Gen8 is available in 2 versions - G1610T and G2020T. Both models are equipped with a 2 core CPU and can support up to 16GB of RAM. The system is shipped with 4 hard drive trays, which allows the installation of any SATA hard drive. It also has a CPU socket, so you can change the CPU.

  • HP Microserver Gen8 G1610T (2x 2.3 GHz)
  • HP Microserver Gen8 G2020T (2x 2.5 GHz)
  • HP Microserver Gen8 E3-1220V2 (4x 3.1 GHz)

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vSphere 5.5 Download – Public Available!

As VMware has announced it at VMworld in San Francisco, the new release of its flagship server virtualization product is now available for everyone. Grab your copy here (You need a My VMware account):

VMware vSphere 5.5 Download

New Product Version:

  • VMware vCenter Server 5.5.0 Build 1312299
  • VMware ESXi 5.5.0 Build 1331820

I have also updated my Release History Database:


vSphere 5 Homelab – ESXi on Intel NUC

When you want to build a VMware vSphere Lab at home, Intel might have a great system for you: The Intel NUC family - The Next Unit of Computing. The system was initially designed to be used as home theater or digital jukebox. Due to it's power it is also a fully adequate replacement for a desktop computer. The Intel NUC is big on performance and surprisingly small in size and power consumption and thus makes it a great candidate for a virtualization home lab.


The Intel NUC System is available as system board only and with a chassis. Currently there are 4 models available, beginning with an Intel Celeron processor and ending with a powerful Intel Core i5 vPro processor:

  • DC53427HYE Kit / D53427RKE Board: 3rd gen. Intel Core i5-3427U (up to 2x 2.80 GHz)
  • DC3217IYE Kit / DC33217GKE Board: Intel Core i3 3217-U (2x 1.8 GHz)
  • DC3217BY Kit / DC33217CK Board: Intel Core i3 3217-U (2x 1.8 GHz)
  • DCCP847DYE Kit / DCP847SKE Board: Intel Celeron 847 (2x 1.10 GHz)

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What's New in vSphere 5.5 - Quick Check


  • vSphere Data Protection Improvements - Backups can now be restored to an ESXi Host directly without a vCenter. It allows a more granular storage, backup and restore configuration and you can set specific start times for backup jobs.
  • vSphere App HA - Restarts application services inside a virtual machine


  • PowerCLI Improvements - Additional Cmdlets for vSphere Tags, Distributed Switches and VM Console. Support for Windows 8/Windows Server 2012
  • Big Data Extensions - Formerly known as Serengeti. Fully automatically deployment and management of Hadoop Clusters. Supports Apache Hadoop 1.2, Cloudera (CDH3 and CDH4), Greenplum HD, Hortonworks (HDP1.3) and MapR2.1.3.
  • vCenter Server Appliance Scale - Supports up to 100 hosts or 3000 virtual machines.
  • vCenter Single Sign-On - Completely rewritten with better redundancy. An external database is no longer required.
  • vSphere Web Client Improvements - Better performance an some neat features like drag and drop, filters and recent items.

vSphere Storage

  • vSAN - vSphere Virtual SAN is an more sophisticated vSphere Storage Appliance. It is more salable, has many more features and runs inside the VMkernel.
  • vSphere Flash Read Cache - It allows you to use local SSDs in your ESXi Host to offload I/O from the SAN to the local SSD.
  • PDL AutoRemove - Automatically removes a device from the host that has been detected as permanent lost (Permanent Device Loss).
  • 62TB VMDK - The maximum size of an Virtual Disk has been increased to 62.9TB
  • VAAI UNMAP Improvements - Now accessible with esxcli and the size is now specified in blocks rather than a percentage.
  • VMFS Heap Improvements - Solved any concerns when accessing more than 30TB of open files from a single ESXi host.

vSphere Networking

  • 40Gb NIC Support - Supports the Mellanox ConnectX-3 adapter cards with Virtual Protocol Interconnect (VPI).
  • Enhanced Host-Level Packet Capture - A Host-based packet capture tool like Wireshark or tcpdump.
  • Quality of Service Tagging - Support for Differentiated Service Code Point (DCSP) tagging.

ESXi 5.x Installation on Intel NUC fails with "No Network Adapters"

When you try to install ESXi 5.x on an Intel Next Unit of Computing (NUC) system, the installation fails with the following error message:

No Network Adapters

No network adapters were detected. Either no network adapters are physically connected to the system, or a suitable driver could not be located. A third party driver may be required.

Ensure that there is at least one network adapter physically connected to the system before attempting installation. If the problem persists, consult the VMware Knowledge Base.

3rd Generation Intel NUC Models:

  • Intel NUC DC53427HYE
  • Intel NUC DC3217IYE
  • Intel NUC DC3217BY

4th Generation Intel NUC Models:

  • Intel NUC D54250WYK
  • Intel NUC D34010WYK
  • Intel NUC D54250WYKH
  • Intel NUC D34010WYKH

5th Generation Intel NUC Models:

  • Intel NUC5i7RYH
  • Intel NUC5i5RYH
  • Intel NUC5i5MYHE
  • Intel NUC5i5RYK
  • Intel NUC5i3RYH
  • Intel NUC5i3MYHE
  • Intel NUC5i3RYK

This message is caused by missing Gigabit Ethernet Controller drivers that are not included in the ESXi Base Image. To fix that, you have to create an customized ESXi Image and add the proper drivers.

Tested with:

  • VMware ESXi 5.0
  • VMware ESXi 5.1
  • VMware ESXi 5.5

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VMware vSphere 5.5 Configuration Maximums

With the upcoming release of VMware vSphere 5.5, there are a few neat platform scalability enhancements. The support for physical hardware has been doubled which makes VMware vSphere available for large enterprise-class hardware:


  • 320 logical CPUs per Host (Up from 160)
  • 4TB Memory (Up from 2TB)
  • 16 NUMA Nodes per host (Up from 8)
  • 4096 vCPUs per host (Up from 2048)
  • 62TB VMDK Size (Up from 2TB)
  • ...more to come

VMware vSphere ESX and vCenter Configuration Maximums