vCenter with Embedded Platform Services Controller Install

With the core infrastructure of my lab setup it’s now time to install vCenter to make management of my servers much easier.

Prerequisites

Before we begin it is important to add your desired vCenter name into your DNS before you try to install your appliance. If you forget to do this it will result in the appliance failing to install and you will need to start over.

Installing the vCenter Appliance

For this guide I am going to mount the .ISO for vCenter on a workstation that has access to my management VLAN. Once the image is mounted I am going to navigate to \vcsa-ua-installer\Win32 and run the installer.exe file.

Your given options to Install, Upgrade, Migrate, or Restore.

  • Click Install
  • Click Next to get past the Introduction
  • Accept the EULA
  • Select the option for Embedded Platform Service Controller

If you’re new to vCenter and want to know the difference between Embedded and External Platform Services Controller just know that VMware is depreciating the external platform service controller in future appliances so it is a moot point.

At this point the installer will want to talk to one of the ESXi hosts so that it can install vCenter. You can use either the IP address or FQDN of the host followed by the username and password that you use to access vSphere’s management web interface and then click Next.

You will get a Certificate Warning screen which you can accept and continue past.

Next up you will want to give your vCenter a VM name and a unique root password. Best practices here is to name your VM the same as what you expect the host name to be.

Next the installer wants to know how big and powerful to make your vCenter. 

  1. Take a look at the deployment size table to figure out where you fit.
  2. Most labs and small businesses can you probably use Tiny. 
  3. Click Next

Select your desired datastore and click next.

You now need to configure your Network Settings.

  1. Select which Network (or port group) you want vCenter to use. 
  2. Select a static IP assignment
  3. Enter the FQDN you used in your DNS when I mentioned the required prerequisite for a successful install
  4. Type the IP address you selected vCenter  will use
  5. Enter your subnet
  6. Enter your Default gateway
  7. Enter the IP addresses of your DNS servers
  8. Click Next

Verify your settings and click Finish to begin the install.

Once the install is complete you should get a message that states that vCenter has been successfully installed.

Setting up the vCenter Appliance

If everything goes well the installer should automatically move you setup vCenter wizard however if there are any issues you could always get their via your web browser by typing https://FQDN:5480 into your browser. Obviously replacing FQDN with the fully qualified domain name of your vCenter server.

  1. Select which NTP servers you’d like vCenter to use to keep its time synchronized.
  2. Enable SSH access
  3. Click Next

You may be prompted with an IP Address change warning. If you do, you can safely click OK.

On the SSO configuration screen:

  • Type vsphere.local for your Single Sign-On domain name
  • Type a password for your Administrator account
  • Click Next

To be clear you can name your SSO domain whatever you want however once we setup AD integration to vSphere you should never really use this account. (Like your root account) 

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