I’m attending the DC08 break-out session about vCenter running on Linux by Adam Young (working at VMware). When Adam entered the stage and introduced himself as ‘a Linux guy’, he got a round of applause. Great start of his session.

The session will feature a live demonstration, One big downside of the currect tech-preview, there are no ODBC drivers, and no sysprep. This means that there isn’t a database in the VA, and no image customization.

vCenter for Linux was created because customers prefer Linux for their mission-critical applications. As it is a Virtual Appliance, the discussion wether vCenter should be deployed physical or virtual is over. Adam explains it this way: “deploy virtual first”.

The VA is based on CentOS 5, which does not require any licensing feeds. At this point, the VA (downloadable here). On VMware Communities you can find a Installation Guide.

Installing the VA is easy: just import it into your ESX-host as a normal VA/VM. Once imported, boot it up and configure networking settings. As I mentioned earlier, you’ll need to get some ODBC-drivers onto the VA using WinSCP/scp. Installing and configuring the ODBC-drivers can be done through a SSH-connection. Simply run ‘vpxda_subsequentboot’ or reboot the VA to automatically install the drivers. Make sure to restart the vpxd daemon with ‘/etc/init.d/vpxd restart’.

One cool thing to notice: logging in to the vCenter instance using the VIclient requires the ‘root’ username, instead of ‘administrator’ we’re all used to. Other than the installation and configuration, vCenter on Linux seen from the VIClient is exactly the same as the Windows vCenter version.

VMware vCenter on Linux 1 from Joep Piscaer on Vimeo.

VMware vCenter on Linux 2 from Joep Piscaer on Vimeo.