Nowadays most of the companies uses VMware vSphere for their server’s virtualization. VMware vSphere provides the best in class virtualization which help companies to run their windows , Linux & other server’s directly onto the virtual machine instead of running it on per physical server. Before running your infra in vSphere or let’s say before buying the hardware for vSphere there are certain measures which you need to follow to get the best out come from your cost & which will help you to run vSphere Infra smoothly without any hassle.
Some users who doesn’t check for the compatibility of the hardware or physical server for vSphere which ends up buying the costly hardware which are not compatible with vSphere & they face issues after the Infra is setup. So in this post you will find why it is so important to validate your hardware before buying the server’s or before setting up the infra so that you don’t face any issues in future.
Validating Hardware for vSphere :
Validating hardware for using with vSphere basically means that your physical server’s or hardware must be VMware vSphere Certified or Compatible to run the vSphere on that hardware. So before going to buy the hardware check for the compatibility of the Hardware from the hardware vendor or you can also check the VMware vSphere Certified servers on the VMware Website which is freely available to anyone.
Why It is important to have VMware Certified or VMware Comparability Hardware:
Nowadays most of the Hardware comes with the VMware vSphere Certified but if you are buying the new one it is necessary to check for compatibility so that in case of the issues or problems you don’t need to worry much.
ESXi comes with the drivers which are only compatible for certified hardware so if you are using the server which are not compatible then there will be drivers compatibility issues you may face with ESXi & ESXi will not work properly. If the Hardware is not compatible that doesn’t mean you can not run the ESXi on that server, you can run but you may face issues later. If you log a call for support in VMware & if they found that hardware or device is not listed in VMware HCL then they will ask you to log a call to manufacturer for support.
If your hardware is certified or compatible then you will get the VMware Support for any issues in future. VMware only provides support for the hardware which are listed in VMware’s Hardware Compatibility Guide. If the hardware is certified then you will not face issues related to the drivers, BIOS, Firmware etc. But if your hardware is not certified then you will face many issues such as driver’s failing, VM’s not running properly and many more. So it is important to have the VMware certified hardware so that you get better optimum results for your costs.
How to check for the VMware Compatibility :
VMware website provides the full comprehensive list which will help you in finding the correct hardware according to your requirement. So let’s see how to do that:
Just go to VMware Compatibility guide on VMware Website. You will find the nice looking table with the list of information available.
As you can see in the above screenshot taken from VMware website you have plenty of options available to find the correct hardware. So if you are new and you want to check whether your current hardware is supported or not then you can check it from here.
Choose the vSphere product version which you are using.
Choose the Partner Name which will be your hardware brand such as Dell, HP, Lenovo etc etc.
If you already have server name or model you can provide it in the Keyword so you will get the exact information.
Specify the System Type which you will be buying or using Blade, Rack , Tower etc.
You can also select the features which you want to use in future such as FT, Direct Path IO etc.
You can also add the additional information such as Memory, CPU Sockets & Cores etc.
As you can see from above screenshot that i have searched for ESXi 6.5 U1 for Dell Server’s which are FT Compatible. There are total number of 99 results available.
Once you select your server from the list of available server’s you will get more information such as Number of sockets, Max Cores per socket & BIOS version which are compatible with the ESXi.
In this way you can search for the Hardware or Physical Servers which are compatible for VMware vSphere.
VMware Compatibility Guide doesn’t end here you can find for more such as CIM Provides, Guest OS, CPU Series, IO Devices etc etc you can check below screenshot for more:
If you are using the certified Hardware then you will also find the customized ESXI ISO images which are purely created for the Specific Hardware which consists of all the compatible driver’s & adapters.
It is recommended to buy the VMware vSphere certified hardware which will help you in future to avoid the problems. If you find that hardware is not listed in the VMware Compatibility guide then make sure to reach your manufacturer or vendor from where you will be buying so that they can assist you in that.
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