VMware 7.0 on Intel NUC with vusb0 – not yet fully working… :(

I wanted to see if I could install vmware 7.0 on my Intel NUC with unsupported onboard network nic.

Conclusion: inconclusive as of yet. VMware runs, but creating a virtual machine is problematic.

First I created an install medium with powershell:

Import-Module VMware.VimAutomation.Core
 Set-PowerCLIConfiguration -Scope User -ParticipateInCEIP $false
 [A]
 Set-ExecutionPolicy -ExecutionPolicy RemoteSigned
 [A]
 Add-EsxSoftwareDepot https://hostupdate.vmware.com/software/VUM/PRODUCTION/main/vmw-depot-index.xml
 Export-ESXImageProfile -ImageProfile "ESXi-7.0.0-15843807-standard" -ExportToBundle -filepath ESXi-7.0.0-15843807-standard.zip -Force
 Remove-EsxSoftwareDepot https://hostupdate.vmware.com/software/VUM/PRODUCTION/main/vmw-depot-index.xml
 New-EsxImageProfile -CloneProfile "ESXi-7.0.0-15843807-standard" -name "ESXi-7.0-IntelNUC" -Vendor "tinkerist.com"
 Set-EsxImageProfile -Name ESXi-7.0.0-15843807-IntelNUC -ImageProfile ESXi-7.0.0-15843807-IntelNUC -AcceptanceLevel CommunitySupported
 Add-EsxSoftwareDepot .\ESXi700-VMKUSB-NIC-FLING-34491022-component-15873236.zip, .\ESXi-7.0.0-15843807-standard.zip
 Add-EsxSoftwarePackage -ImageProfile ESXi-7.0.0-15843807-IntelNUC -SoftwarePackage vmkusb-nic-fling
 Export-ESXImageProfile -ImageProfile ESXi-7.0.0-15843807-IntelNUC -ExportToIso -filepath ./ESXi-7.0.0-15843807-IntelNUC.iso

Then, using this .iso, with Rufus 3.9 I made a bootable usb drive.

Installing vmware 7.0 using the USB Fling will result in a message that no network cards can be found and assigned or something along those lines.
I just didn’t complete the installation, just left it up to that point, removed the install media, and rebooted the machine.
VMware actually is then actually installed, but the setup has not assigned the network correctly so you will have to do that manually.

I noticed the specified root password was not saved, so it was empty, I set that using the console (after logging in with an empty password).

Then I configured the network settings manually, after enabling shell, on the console.

 esxcli network vswitch standard add --vswitch-name=vSwitch0
 esxcli network vswitch standard portgroup add --portgroup-name=Portgroup0 --vswitch-name=vSwitch0
 esxcli network vswitch standard uplink add --uplink-name=vusb0 --vswitch-name=vSwitch0
 esxcli network ip interface add --interface-name=vmk0 --portgroup-name=Portgroup0
 esxcli network ip interface ipv4 set --interface-name=vmk0 --ipv4=192.168.99.253 --netmask=255.255.255.0 --type=static

Adding, removing and configuring vSwitches and port groups can be done as stated here:
https://kb.vmware.com/s/article/1008127

I had to add this to /etc/rc.local.d/local/sh: (found this over at the vusb fling forum)

vusb0_status=$(esxcli network nic get -n vusb0 | grep 'Link Status' | awk '{print $NF}')
 count=0
 while [[ $count -lt 20 && "${vusb0_status}" != "Up" ]]
 do
 sleep 10
 count=$(( $count + 1 ))
 vusb0_status=$(esxcli network nic get -n vusb0 | grep 'Link Status' | awk '{print $NF}')
 done

if [ "${vusb0_status}" = "Up" ]; then
 esxcfg-vswitch -L vusb0 vSwitch0
 esxcfg-vswitch -M vusb0 -p "Management Network" vSwitch0
 esxcfg-vswitch -M vusb0 -p "VM Network" vSwitch0
 fi

This still resulted in a vmware that didn’t have the vusb0 marked as “Management” when the machine starts.
Tried a couple of things, no result. This means every boot you will have to go into the console and select vusb0 as worthy of “Management” before you can get to the web ui remotely.

This sucked, imho.

What even more sucked is the new virtual machine configuration that did not have a network selectable.

I added another portgroup to the same vSwitch, that caused a virtual machine config to able to have a selection of a network-setting.

But no actual network.

I am not done with this until it works.
OR when it takes too much time i’ll abandon this idea of having a vusb0 on vmware.

Cheers.

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