Booting ESX ISO installer unmodified from USB with Ventoy

With the number of physical hosts not having CDROMs, along with newer laptops not having burners,   I figure it’s time to move away from installing ESX from CDROM in my lab or Customer site.

I had tried VMware’s instructions and failed,  and found this method:

Recently I noticed that a new USB multi-boot program called Ventoy.  However it was not able to boot ESXi 6.5 installer likely to the UEFI boot.  Then a recent update to Ventoy added UEFI boot support, so I decided to try again,  and this time Booting ESXi worked !

Note: This allows copying multiple un-modified VMware ISO files to the prepared USB stick, and you can choose which ISO to load at boot time.

Here are a few pictures of the Ventoy boot screen with ESX6.5 and ESX6.7 loaded.

ventoyMainMenu
Ventoy Main Menu

 

ventoyDirs
Ventoy <F3> shows Folders on USB

 

ventoy_vmwareDir
Ventoy VMware Folder contents

 

ventoy_esxbooting
ESXi booting from Ventoy USB

Install Instructions for Windows / Linux here.

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