Since I stopped being an instructor in 2009, I found myself increasingly distanced from vSphere and core platform. That was partly because of circumstances. My last book was on vSphere4, and didn’t write a vSphere4.1 book because I personally felt that the changes weren’t that massively different. By then I was stuck deep into the VMware Site Recovery Manager 5.0 book, and although I was using the beta/RC for vSphere5.0, the platform was increasing “just there”, and something I took for granted. Since joining VMware in August, 2012 my focus again has taken me to another layer in the management plane – again making vSphere just something that I take for granted. Recently, I’ve been writing about my experiences of playing about with Windows Hyper-V 2012 R2 – taking me further away from my natural home. Combining these experiences together I’ve notice my knowledge of vSphere is starting to get a bit “fuzzy”. I remember back when I was full time instructor stuff was there in my head ready for instant recall. Now, when I need to do stuff – I find myself googling to remind myself on how to do stuff – sometimes coming across my own content. Heck, even last week I pulled the old “Implementing vSphere” book down from the shelf to remind me of something. Things were brought home to me when I took the VCP5 exam just before the cut of date. Normally, I’d have walked/aced the exam – what happened is that I scraped through. It just goes to show the old adage is true. If you don’t use it, you lose it. A good example of this was when I attended the “vCloud Director” this year with the Grand Master of VMware Instructors, Eric Sloof. Eric was talking about load-balancing on vmnics. This a feature I know REALLY well. I was shocked discover that a new method had been added (don’t ask me when) which allows for a load-balancing I hadn’t even heard of called “Route based on physical NIC Load”.


It was then I began to realise I’ve spent so much time with SRM, View and up in the clouds – that I beginning to loose grip on the fundamental building block of all VMware technologies – vSphere. And I needed to do something to arrest that fading of familiarity.

So for that reason I want to do something that will help both myself and others. It’s then I started to think of a “Back to Basics” series that would bring together an article; video demo and video/audio discussion in one place. I thought that bring these different medias under one location, and engaging with folks in the community it would be a good way of refamiliarising myself with vSphere. This content (at least in the early stages) will be of no use to anyone with decade or more’s experience of using vSphere. It’s more geared toward ‘noobs’ and SMB folks who might not always have the luxury of time or training to learn vSphere to the required depth. This decision kind of comes together nicely as I decided to wipe my lab down and complete re-install it with vSphere5.5 and also I’m embarking on the process of quitting my commitment to the colocation facility and going back to a homelab. You call it “Return of the Homelab” if you like.

Anyway. Introductions over. First topic.Is all about installing VMware ESXi 5.5. In the post there’s step-by-step guide on how to do it, together with a “Show Me How” video.

Installing VMware ESXi 5.5

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