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Integrating VMWare images

Deploying VMware ESXi with MAAS 2.5+

To deploy VMware ESXi through MAAS, you'll need to create a specialised image using an official VMware ISO. Canonical offers a GitHub repository↗ of community-contributed packer↗ templates to automate this process.

Note: VMware does not support cloning boot devices↗. This may lead to issues↗ like data corruption on VMFS datastores with cloned boot devices.

Prerequisites for creating a VMware image

To create and deploy a VMware image, you'll need:

Features and limitations

Cloning VMware images

As previously mentioned, VMware does not support cloning boot devices↗. This limitation may cause data corruption issues on VMFS datastores.

VMware images and MAAS networking

VMware images and MAAS storage

Custom storage configurations are unsupported; MAAS will extend datastore1 to the full size of the deployment disk.

ESXi hardware support

VMware has specific hardware requirements↗. Running ESXi in a virtual machine or MAAS virsh Pod is not supported.

Customising the image

Modify the packer-maas/vmware-esxi/http/vmware-esxi-ks.cfg file to customise the image.

Building an image

Load the nbd kernel module:

sudo modprobe nbd

Navigate to the appropriate directory:

cd /path/to/packer-maas/vmware-esxi

Build the image:

sudo packer build -var 'vmware_esxi_iso_path=/path/to/VMware-VMvisor-Installer-6.7.0-8169922.x86_64.iso' vmware-esxi.json

Uploading an image

To upload the image to MAAS, use:

maas $PROFILE boot-resources create name='esxi/6.7' title='VMware ESXi 6.7' architecture='amd64/generic' filetype='ddgz' content@=vmware-esxi.dd.gz