I am new to vmware world! I have IBM Blade S, and have one of the blade servers with 24GB of Ram and 2* 2.5 Quad Core cpu.. I want to use virtualization for that server, so that I will have RedHat Enter 5 64bit and windows 32bit 2003 R2...
I downloaded the free version of vmware ESXI, and installed it on server, but in order to create virtual machine I had to install vSphere client, which prompt me for 53 days trial! (Isn't that free)!!??

My questions:
1- Is the ESXI free version of vmware?
2- How I can manage/create/use/remove Virtual machines from the server? Is the only way vsphere? is there anything free?
3- can I do anything from server console?
4- When I start the install the vmware virtual machine, it asked me for the number of CPU to use, and it seems it has to do with the number or licenses... What does that mean?
5- Can I increase/decrease the allocated ram/cpu/storage for each VM after creating it?

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1- Is the ESXI free version of vmware?
No you need a license as well. Free to try for 60 days:)

2- How I can manage/create/use/remove Virtual machines from the server? Is the only way vsphere? is there anything free?
No. You can use vmware server 2.0 for free. But you need an OS installed before you can create VM. OS can be windows or linux.
Or if you like, you can try Microsoft virtual server which is also free.

3- can I do anything from server console?
For esx normally use VI client to manage vms. You can do advance things in console if you want. You need to be familiar with the commands.

4- When I start the install the vmware virtual machine, it asked me for the number of CPU to use, and it seems it has to do with the number or licenses... What does that mean?
This is the total number of virtual cpu you want to assign to a vm.

5- Can I increase/decrease the allocated ram/cpu/storage for each VM after creating it?
Yes you can. But after OS is installed, it is not recommended to change cpu settings. Others are OK.

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ESXi is free, but vSphere is an add-on, and that isn't free. As mentioned above you don't need vSphere to manage VMware but you either need to learn the commands, or use a tool that installs to windows boxes.

You might want to check the redhat repositories, they may have their own virtualization tool, like XEN. CentOS I know has XEN in the repositories, and that is a clone of RH.
Hi nammari,

1.) In my opinion ESXi is free ... See the FAQ at http://www.vmware.com/products/esxi/uses.html

Why is VMware making ESXi free?

    VMware is making its standalone ESXi hypervisor available at no cost in order to help companies of all sizes experience the benefits of virtualization. Customers have shown tremendous interest in ESXi due to its innovative architecture, simple setup, and high performance. Allowing IT administrators to obtain VMware ESXi for free enables everyone to gain access to VMware's datacenter technology and prove its value in their own companies.

2.) The vSphere client is free also. You can get it after you installed your ESXi server by accessing its web interface under http://server_name_or_ip and simply downloading it. Chances are, that you must create a free vmware account in order to get a free license for the client, but it would be really silly, that vmware started in version 4 to take fees for the client. I'm using ESXi 3.5 and the client is definately free.

3.) No... There is a way to activate a busybox locally on the server, but this unsupported,
But there is a remote console client which can be used for configuring and scripting etc.

4.) you can choose how many cpus (or cores) the virtual machine can utilize.. this feature is called virtual smp. look at:


5.) Yes... as long as your guest systems supports it (number of cpus)... Windows OSes might want to reactivate if you change to many hardware related things.

Kind Regards,


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nammariAuthor Commented:
Thanks for your answers...
As for #2... can you please provide more details on #2, what is the difference between VSphere, VCenter and Vmware server? Why should I use Microsoft Virtual Server while installing Vmware? My question was, how I can manage my Vmware virtual machines, what software should I use?

Another related question, if I have 1TB of storage, and assign 800GB to a Redhat virtual machine, then I decided to increase that after the OS been installed, what will happen? does new added space appear as unmounted space?
vSphere is the name of the new VMware version 4.0. It is a general term for all the products of version 4.

vCenter is a Windows application and a database backend with which you can manage more than one one ESX or ESXi server. With vCenter you can also use things like HA or DRS or vMotion.

HA: High Avaiability - If one ESX Server goes down another could takeover all virtual machines of this faulty host.

DRS: If one ESX host is really busy and another host is bored, the bored host could takeover the VMs of the busy one.

vMotion: give you the ability to migrate a VM from one ESX host to another, without powering off the VMs.

vSphere Client is the client application with which you can access and configure a single ESX, a single ESXi or vCenter Server.. And believe me ... it's really free as long as you use it only for connection to ESXi hosts.

The only circumstances where you have to pay for ESXi related this is:
You want to add a ESXi host to a vCenter server and use it for vMotion etc.
If you want to have retail product support through vmware (ie. telephone support) you will have to pay it.

You are free to choose if you want to access your free ESXi host through the free vSphere client or via the remote cli tools.  

I don't know why you should use MS Virtual Server ;)

Kind Regards,
VMware server runs on top of another OS, Like Linux or windows, while ESX(i) uses it's own very small OS it boots from.

I have Linux installed (Mint) which is my main OS there, and then I have VMware seer installed under that. Now I can run different VM's like XP, Vista, Windows 7 and other Linux distros on that box. VMware server uses a web-based management console, so I can connect to those VM's from other PC's easily using my favorite browser, firefox. I like that because I'm not limited to running windows on those PC's I connect with. Neither ESXi or ESX have that web-based console available by default as far as I know.

With VMware server, if you build your VM's using the SCSI controller of VMware and not the IDE controller, you simply increase the disk space via the console, and then your guest OS will have additional unpartitioned space available.
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