evision level: 1.2
Updated: 2 September, 2019
© Copyright Lenovo 2019.
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Note: Before using this information and the product it supports, read the general information in 6.0 Notices in this document.
Supported servers: Lenovo® ThinkSystem servers. For a complete list of servers that are supported with this operating system/hypervisor, please refer to the Lenovo OS Interoperability Guide.
Applicable OS/Hypervisor versions:
- VMware ESXi 6.0u3
- VMware ESXi 6.5b
- VMware ESXi 6.5u1
- VMware ESXi 6.5u2
- VMware ESXi 6.5u3
- VMware ESXi 6.7
- VMware ESXi 6.7u1
- VMware ESXi 6.7u2
- VMware ESXi 6.7u3
Follow the instructions in this document in sequential order unless these instructions advise you to follow other operation procedures. Windows and messages might differ from those in this document. Throughout this document, the term select is used to denote the use of arrow keys, the Tab key, Alt + a letter combination, or the mouse to make a selection.
References to optional hardware in this document do not imply support of that hardware. For information about supported options, see the ServerProven® information for your server at http://www.lenovo.com/us/en/serverproven/.
- 1 1.0 What you will need
- 2 2.0 Where to download files
- 3 3.0 Preparing the hardware
- 4 4.0 Installing VMware ESXi 6.x
- 5 5.0 Technical resources
- 6 6.0 Notices
You must have the following software and hardware for the installation:
- A registered copy of VMware ESXi 6.x.
- A copy of the Lenovo custom image for VMWare ESXi 6.x. You can obtain the latest image for your server from: https://vmware.lenovo.com/content/custom_iso/.
- Supported I/O adapters and hard disk drives. See ServerProven® list for the of supported options and part numbers for the server.
- Latest driver and firmware packages for this system and OS. Refer to Lenovo VMware I/O drivers and firmware code recipe.
You can download OS images, device drivers and files from the following sites:
- Lenovo VMware ESXi Custom Image: https://vmware.lenovo.com/content/custom_iso/.
- Lenovo VMware I/O drivers and firmware code recipe: https://support.lenovo.com/us/en/solutions/ht506028/.
- Lenovo VMware Update Manager (VUM) latest release: https://vmware.lenovo.com/content/latest_index/.
- Lenovo Datacenter World Wide Support Portal: https://datacentersupport.lenovo.com/us/en/.
- Lenovo China Support Portal: http://support.lenovo.com.cn/.
To prepare the hardware, update the system firmware, and configure the disk arrays, see the Lenovo ThinkSystem Information Center at the Lenovo ThinkSystem Information Center.
Please set your preferred boot mode (UEFI mode or Legacy mode) in the UEFI F1 setup menu (or using tools such as Lenovo XClarity Essentials) before you begin the OS installation process.
NOTE: UEFI Secure Boot is supported with VMware ESXi versions 6.5 or newer only.
To download the latest device drivers, firmware packages and installation instructions for your server, complete the following steps:
- Go to Lenovo Support Portal.
- Under Select a Product Family click on Data Center then select Servers.
- In the Select Series drop down box select ThinkSystem.
- In the Select Subseries drop down box select the model of your server.
- In the Select Machine Type drop down box select the machine type of your server.
- On the next page select Drivers and Software from the blue banner.
- In the Operating System drop down box select your appropriuate VMware ESXi version. For example, VMWare ESXi 6.7.
- This will display a list of the most recent firmware and device drivers for your system.
- Follow the Readme.txt file in each download package for installation instructions.
Alternatively, you can download the packages directly from the Lenovo VMware I/O drivers and firmware code recipe.
Always make sure you are using the recommended system and I/O firmware versions that are validated on this version of VMware ESXi. Refer to Lenovo VMware I/O drivers and firmware code recipe for the latest version information. Follow the instructions in the README (.txt) file that is included with the firmware package for installation.
For details on firmware update on Lenovo ThinkSystem servers, refer to Lenovo ThinkSystem Firmware and Driver Update Best Practices.
To install VMware ESXi 6.x, follow the detailed instructions in vSphere Installation and Setup Guide. For further information regarding the installation and support of guest operating systems and administration of VMware ESXi 6.x, visit VMware vSphere Documentation.
NOTE: Lenovo recommends that you install VMware ESXi 6.x using the The Lenovo VMware ESXi custom image. Installing from the custom image has several advantages:
- It is tested across Lenovo’s server and adapter portfolio with the same ServerProven® support guarantee as VMware’s base release.
- It enables support of Lenovo’s tools, including Lenovo XClarity Essentials (ToolCenter) that provide the ability to flash server firmware such as UEFI, XCC, and IO adapters firmware.
- It includes the latest VMware certified IO drivers to support Lenovo servers, as outlined in Lenovo VMware I/O drivers and firmware code recipe.
NOTE: VMware ESXi 6.x does not support onboard RAID for ThinkSystem servers. Use Lenovo ThinkSystem supported RAID adapters, and the Lenovo VMware Custom Image, if you intend on installing VMware ESXi on RAID drives. Please refer to Lenovo ServerProven® for detailed information on supported RAID adapters.
- Install the latest drivers for your system. For details on driver update on Lenovo ThinkSystem servers, refer to Lenovo ThinkSystem Firmware and Driver Update Best Practices.
- Alternatively, you can update the drivers using Lenovo VMware Update Manager (VUM) at: https://vmware.lenovo.com/content/latest_index/. Refer to Lenovo VMware Customized Image Reference Guide for more information.
- Enable remote logging when you set up embedded ESXi, before any problem occurs. This will help Lenovo Support to assist in debugging and solving complex problems, if they occure. For instructions on setting up remote logging, refer to http://kb.vmware.com/kb/1033696.
- Lenovo recommends you review all How-tos and Solutions related to this system and the Operating System you are installing. How-tos and Solutions are found at the Lenovo Data Center Support Portal.
Currently, there are no system specific instructions for this operating system/hypervisor.
The following technical resources are currently available for VMware ESXi 6.x :
- Technical Information
- Lenovo VMWare OS Support Center.
- Lenovo Repository for VMware Updates and VUM.
- Lenovo VMware ESXi Custom Image download.
- Lenovo VMware Customized Image Reference Guide.
- Firmware / Drivers Recipe for Lenovo ThinkSystem and System x.
- Firmware / Drivers Recipe for Lenovo ThinkAgile VX vSAN Ready Nodes and Build Your Own.
- VMware resources on Lenovo Press.
- White Papers
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