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VDI in Your Own Private Cloud, Part 2

Created: 28 Jun 2010 • Updated: 29 Jul 2010
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In the previous article ESX or ESXi is installed and configured.

Now you need a Vsphere or Virtual Center client to connect to the ESX and/or ESXi host.

More information and a how to can be found here:Deep Intro to Vmware, Part 2: Virtual Center
Deep Intro to VMware, Part 3: Virtual Infrastructure Client

Now we are ready to build our master image. In this series of articles we are going for Windows 7. Now you can do several things. You can install a Windows 7 image on a desktop or laptop and then use VMware converter to convert it into a virtual client, but you can also create a virtual machine.

The easiest way is to download Windows 7 as an Iso file and connect it to a CD drive in your virtual machine.

Creating a new virtual machine for Windows 7

Select New virtual machine.

The virtual machine wizard starts.

Select the option Custom to get all options you need.

Give the virtual machine a unique name and click Next.

Select the datastore you want to allocate your virtual disk on and click Next.

When you are using VMware 4 or higher, you can select version 7. For ESX or ESXi 3 you need to select version 4.

Because we are installing Windows 7 we select the Microsoft Windows 7 system. Even if VMware tells you experimental, you can continue. VMware has no Windows 7 customisation in place, but we are not going to use that. Click Next to continue.

Now select the number of processors. You can choose beween one or more.

NOTE: If you ever think to decide to give your virtual machines two cores, then select two now. If you select one, you will never be able to upgrade to two and take advantage of two cores. If you select two and you are deploying with one there is no penalty for that.

Now add the memory you want for your virtual machine. Just give it one or even two GB. It will make the process faster, and you can always adjust it. Click Next to continue.

Now add your network card and click Next.

Choose the default selected LSI Logic SAS controller and click Next.

Create a new disk and click Next to continue.

Select the size 20GB or any size you want as long as it is greater then 10GB. I choose to use thin provisioning, but that is not necessary. Select what you feel comfortable with and click Next.

Keep the default options and click Next to continue.

Now you see an overview and you can click Finish to create the virtual machine.

In your Virtual Infrastructure client you can now select the new created machine and then select the button edit settings, because we need to adjust a few options.

Click Edit settings.

Select the CD/DVD drive.

Select the button connect at power on, and choose Datastore Iso File. Make sure you have the iso file uploaded into your datastores in ESX. You also might choose to use your local client device CD/DVD player and use the Windows 7 disk that Microsoft provides.

Note: ONLY USE WINDOWS 7 ULTIMATE OR ENTERPRISE AS THE OTHER VERSIONS DO NOT HAVE CORRECT RDP SUPPORT. Believe me, you need that.

Then select the tab options.

Select boot options and then mark the next time the virtual machine boot, force entry into the BIOS setup screen.

At first boot the Bios will be visible and you can select the DVD drive as first startup device.

This will force the client to boot from DVD drive.

Now Windows 7 setup starts.

Install Windows as you like. Because this machine will be fully customised after we completely prepared it, it does not really matter what you do.

After all the steps are followed you have a Master Windows 7 machine.

Now you need to fully update and patch that virtual machine by selecting Windows Update and fully patch it.

Ensure that Dotnet is fully installed.

Then download and install Symantec Workspace Virtualization on the machine. Because we want to manage all images and applications that is the best choice for software virtualization.

Also you need to install VMware tools into your image.

More information about VMware Tools and how to install it can be found here:Deep Intro to VMware ESX, Part 6: VMware Tools