vSphere Thick Client? I don’t need no stinkin’ thick client!

Quick post about an awesome, new VMware Fling that was released somewhat recently. I’m a little late to the party but I haven’t needed to deploy a new host since its release until today.

If you haven’t heard, VMware Flings are small applications built by the VMware engineers that aren’t officially supported immediately but can still prove very powerful for your environment. Recently, they addressed something that bugged me from the day VMware announced that the web client was the future and the C# thick client was going bye-bye. Long story short, if you wanted to directly interface with an ESXi host without vCenter middle-manning, you were left with either PowerCLI, SSH, or the bloated C# client.

This new fling is called the ESXi Embedded Host Client, a lightweight web client installed on your hosts that gives you a familiar vCenter web client experience. It takes about a minute to install via a one line esxcli command.

SSH into your host(s) and execute this command:

That will pull down the latest version of the Fling from VMware’s servers and auto-install. From that point on, you can use your favorite flavor of browser and point to the DNS/IP of your host and interface with it as you please.

If you find you love this Fling and want to deploy it your datacenter, Brian Graf wrote a nice pCLI script to automate the whole ordeal which you find here.

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