VMware’s vCenter server appliance 6.0 has the same scalability numbers as the windows installable server. It seems that there is no reason to avoid the installation of vCenter appliance again. Buy one Microsoft windows server license less next time.
I will not go through an installation guide since there are plenty of these published on the Internet. But I will underline a few problems that I encountered during the installation of the appliance.
A. Don’t forget to install the client integration plugin
First of all, the appliance comes in iso format not in ova.
So mount the iso file and go into vcsa folder
Execute the file with “run as administrator”.
B. Don’t forget to set the VLAN Id on your VM Network
If you are using VLANs on your switches, make sure that you have already set it right on your host VM Network. Otherwise the vCenter will be disconnected from the network and you will end up with a “Failed to start services. Firstboot Error.”.
It seems that this error appears because the vCenter appliance cannot contact the configured DNS service.
Another interesting implication is that if you have configured the ip of your NTP server for time synchronization instead of ESXi host time synchronization. The installation script will stop abruptly. So, remember to setup the VLAN correctly.
C. Don’t forget to manually enter the DNS entries of vCenter ip
vCenter 6.0 appliance is very sensitive with the host entries on your DNS server. Double check that you have correctly entered the host name and the IP address of vCenter as well as the reverse lookup record.
D. Read vSphere’s common issues document
Read VMware’s common issues section in vSphere’s Release Notes document. Very useful, for example it seems that you should configure only one DNS server during the installation, even though the entry prompts you to enter more than one ip separated by comma!
What a nightmare! Please VMware, correct the pre-check functions in the installation script and return meaningful error messages!