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Minimum system requirements for installing VMware vCenter Server (1003882)

  • 32 Ratings

Symptoms

  • VMware vCenter Server installation may error before completion
  • VMware vCenter Server installation fails to complete
  • Unable to complete vCenter Server installation

Purpose

The purpose of this document is to ensure that you meet the minimum system requirements in order to install vCenter Server.
 
Note: Failure to satisfy these requirements will result in your installation not completing. These requirements are the minimum, and for enhanced performance you should scale your server appropriately.

Resolution

vCenter Server 5.x

Operating system requirements

Note: vCenter Server 5.x requires a 64-bit operating system and cannot be installed on a 32-bit operating system. When performing an install you must ensure that your operating system is 64-bit capable. For more information, see Operating System Compatibility for vSphere Client, vCenter Server, and VMware vCenter Update Manager in the vSphere Compatibility Matrixes.


Supported Databases
 
The bundled Microsoft SQL Server 2008 R2 Express database package is installed and configured when you select the bundled database during vCenter Server installation or upgrade. 

Note: Microsoft SQL Server 2008 R2 Express is intended for use with small deployments of up to 5 hosts and/or 50 virtual machines.
 
To install the bundled Microsoft SQL Server 2008 R2 Express database, Microsoft Windows Installer version 4.5 (MSI 4.5) is required on your system. You can download MSI 4.5 from the Microsoft Web site. You can also install MSI 4.5 directly from the vCenter Server autorun.exe installer.

For a current list of supported databases, see VMware Product Interoperability Matrixes.
 
To know if a database is supported:
  1. Navigate to VMware Product Interoperability Matrixes.
  2. Select Solution/Database Interoperability.
  3. In 1. Select a VMware Product:, select VMware vCenter Server.
  4. Select the required vCenter Server version.
  5. Under Add Database, select the database and click Add.

    If you see a green tick sign, the database is supported.

vCenter Server 4.x

 To ensure a trouble-free installation of vCenter Server:
  • Make sure your hardware and operating system requirements are compliant. The vCenter Server 4.x system can be a physical or a virtual machine.

    Note: For more information, see ESX and vCenter Server Installation Guide and vSphere Compatibility Matrix. vCenter Server 4.x requires a 64-bit DSN to function properly, see the above documentation for installation instructions for the version of vCenter Server 4.x you are installing, and what operating system you are installing it on.

    • Processor – Intel or AMD x86 (64-bit if installing vCenter Server 4.1) processor with two or more logical cores, each with a speed of 2GHz.
    • Memory – 3GB RAM. RAM requirements may be higher if your database runs on the same machine. VMware VirtualCenter Management WebServices requires 128MB to 1.5GB of memory which is allocated at startup.
    • Disk storage – 2GB. Disk requirements may be higher if your database runs on the same machine.
    • Microsoft SQL Server 2005 Express disk requirements. The bundled database requires up to 2GB free disk space to decompress the installation archive.
    • Networking – 1G bit recommended.

  • Make sure your database requirements and patch levels are compliant:

    Note: For more information, see vSphere Compatibility Matrix and vCenter Server Database Patch and Configuration Requirements. To use an existing database, you need to provide a 64-bit system DSN which points to the vCenter Server database. You also need to ensure that you have created a full backup of your database before proceeding. In addition, VMware Update Manager 4.x is still a 32-bit application and requires a 32-bit DSN to be created.

    • Microsoft SQL server Database Support:
      • Microsoft SQL Server 2005 Express

        Note: Microsoft SQL Server 2005 Express is intended for use with small deployments of up to 5 hosts and/or 50 virtual machines.
         
      • Microsoft SQL Server 2005 Standard edition (SP1, SP2, SP3)
      • Microsoft SQL Server 2005 Standard edition (SP2, SP3) 64 bit
      • Microsoft SQL Server 2005 Enterprise edition (SP1, SP2, SP3)
      • Microsoft SQL Server 2005 Enterprise edition (SP2, SP3) 64 bit
      • Microsoft SQL Server 2008 Standard Edition
      • Microsoft SQL Server 2008 Standard Edition 64 bit
      • Microsoft SQL Server 2008 Enterprise Edition
      • Microsoft SQL Server 2008 Enterprise Edition 64 bit

    • Oracle Database Support:
      • Oracle 10g Standard edition (Release 2 [10.2.0.4])
      • Oracle 10g Enterprise edition (Release 2 [10.2.0.4])
      • Oracle 10g Enterprise edition (Release 2 [10.2.0.4]) 64 bit
      • Oracle 11g Standard edition
      • Oracle 11g Enterprise edition

    • IBM DB2 9 Support:
      • IBM DB2 Express C
      • IBM DB2 Express Edition 9
      • IBM DB2 Workgroup Server Edition 9
      • IBM DB2 Enterprise Server Edition 9

        Note: IBM DB2 database is only supported for vCenter Server. There is no support for Update Manager or any plug-in that requires a database. 
  • Make sure your operating system meets these requirements:

    Note: vCenter Server 4.1 does not support 32-bit host operating systems, and only supports 64 bit, while vCenter Server 4.0 may still be installed on a 32-bit operating system. For more information, see the Operating System Compatibility for vSphere Client, vCenter Server, and VMware vCenter Update Manager section of the vSphere Compatibility Matrix .

     
  • vCenter Server 4.1
    • Windows XP Pro SP2 (SP2 required, 64-bit)
    • Windows Server 2003 (SP1 required, 64-bit)
    • Windows Server 2008 (64-bit)

  • vCenter Server 4.0
    • Windows XP Pro
    • Windows Server 2003
    • Windows Server 2003 64-bit (Compatibility mode only)
    • Windows Server 2008
    • Windows Server 2008 64-bit (Compatibility mode only)

vCenter Server 2.5.x

Many of the system requirements for VirtualCenter 2.5.x are the same as for those for VirtualCenter 2.0.x.

The differences are outlined below:

Hardware Requirements
  • MSDE has now been replaced with Microsoft SQL Server 2005 Express
  • Database Disk Requirements - The bundled database requires up to 2GB free disk space to decompress the installation archive. However, approximately 1.5GB of these files are deleted after the installation is complete.
Software Requirements

The vCenter Server is supported as a service on the 32‐bit versions of these operating systems:
  • Windows 2000 Server SP4 with Update Rollup 1.
  • Windows XP Pro SP2.
  • Windows 2003 Server SP1 (all releases except 64‐bit).
  • Windows 2003 Server R2.

    Notes
    :
    • vCenter Server 2.x installation is not supported on 64‐bit operating systems.
      The vCenter Server installer requires Internet Explorer 5.5 or higher to run.
    • For operating systems, except Windows Server 2003 SP1, install Microsoft Windows Installer 3.1. Otherwise, your vCenter Server installation may fail.

      For information on downloading Windows Installer 3.1, see the Microsoft Knowledge Base article 893803.

Note: The preceding links were correct as of April 16, 2014. If you find a link is broken, provide feedback and a VMware employee will update the link.

vCenter Server Database Requirements

Database Type
Service Pack, Patch, and Driver Requirements
Microsoft SQL Server 2000 Standard
SP4
For Windows 2000 and Windows XP, apply MDAC 2.8 SP1 to the client.
Use SQL Server driver for the client.
Microsoft SQL Server 2000 Enterprise
SP4
For Windows 2000 and Windows XP, apply MDAC 2.8 SP1 to the client.
Use SQL Server driver for the client.
Microsoft SQL Server 2005 Standard
Install SP1 or SP2 for Microsoft SQL Server 2005.
For Windows 2000 and Windows XP, apply MDAC 2.8 SP1 to the client.
Use the SQL Native Client driver for the client.
Microsoft SQL Server 2005 Enterprise
Install SP1 or SP2 for Microsoft SQL Server 2005.
For Windows 2000 and Windows XP, apply MDAC 2.8 SP1 to the client.
Use the SQL Native Client driver for the client.
Microsoft SQL Server 2005 Express SP2
For Windows 2000 and Windows XP, apply MDAC 2.8 SP1 to the client.
Use SQL native client driver for the client.
Oracle 9i release 2 Standard
Oracle 9i release 2 Enterprise
Apply patch 9.2.0.8.0 to the server and client.
Oracle 10g Standard Release 1 (10.1.0.3.0)
Oracle 10g Enterprise Release 1 (10.1.0.3.0)
None
Oracle 10g Standard Release 2 (10.2.0.1.0)
Oracle 10g Enterprise Release 2 (10.2.0.1.0)
First apply patch 10.2.0.3.0 to the client and server.
Then apply patch 5699495 to the client.
 
 

VirtualCenter 2.0.x

Requirements are the same for VirtualCenter 2.0 / 2.0.1 / 2.0.2

The VirtualCenter Server is a physical or virtual machine configured with access to a supported database.

Hardware Requirements
  • Processor - 2.0GHz or higher Intel or AMD x86 processor. Processor requirements can be larger if your database is run on the same hardware.
  • Memory - 2GB RAM minimum. RAM requirements can be larger if your database is run on the same hardware.
  • Disk Storage - 560MB minimum, 2GB recommended. You must have 245MB free on the destination drive for installation of the program, and you must have 315MB free on the drive containing your %temp% directory.

    Note
    : Storage requirements can be larger if your database runs on the same hardware as the VirtualCenter Server machine. The size of the database varies with the number hosts and virtual machines you manage. Using default settings for a year with 25 hosts and 8 to 16 virtual machines each, the total database size can consume up to 2.2GB (SQL) or 1.0GB (Oracle).


    MSDE disk requirements - The demonstration database requires up to 2GB free disk space to decompress the installation archive. However, approximately 1.5GB of these files are deleted after the installation is complete.
  • Networking - 10/100 Ethernet adapter minimum (Gigabit recommended).
  • Scalability - A VirtualCenter Server configured with the hardware minimums can support 20 concurrent clients, 50 ESX Server hosts, and over 1000 virtual machines. A dual-processor VirtualCenter Server with 3GB RAM can scale to 50 concurrent client connections, 100 ESX Server hosts, and over 1500 virtual machines.
Software Requirements
 
The VirtualCenter Server is supported as a service on the 32‐bit versions of these operating systems:
  • Windows 2000 Server SP4 with Update Rollup 1.
  • Windows XP Pro (at any SP level).
  • Windows 2003 (all releases except 64‐bit).

    Note: VirtualCenter 2.0 installation is not supported on 64‐bit operating systems.
    The VirtualCenter installer requires Internet Explorer 5.5 or higher in order to run.
VirtualCenter Database Requirements:

VirtualCenter supports these database formats:
  • Microsoft SQL Server 2000 (SP 4 only)
  • Oracle 9iR2, 10gR1 (versions 10.1.0.3 and higher only), and 10gR2
  • Microsoft MSDE (not supported for production environments)
    Each database requires some configuration adjustments in addition to the basic installation.
    Note: If you do not have database administrator (DBA) privileges in your organization, you need assistance from your DBA.

VirtualCenter 1.4.x

The VirtualCenter server must have:
  • Administrator privileges on the installing system to install the VirtualCenter server.
    The VirtualCenter server installation adds VirtualCenter as a Windows service.
  • Windows 2000 Server, Windows 2000 Advanced Server, Windows XP Professional, or Windows Server 2003 (Web, Standard, and Enterprise).
  • A minimum of 2GB RAM for VirtualCenter configurations managing 50 managed hosts or fewer.
    For greater than 50 managed hosts configurations, use 3GB RAM. For configurations with 100 managed hosts running 2000 virtual machines, use 4GB RAM.
  • As a minimum a Pentium IV 2.0Ghz processor. Dual processors are recommended for deployments with more than 25 managed hosts.
  • A minimum of 1 10/100Mbps NIC (1Gbps NIC recommended).
  • Windows Script version 5.6 or later. If the server does not have this version, VirtualCenter installer automatically updates to Windows Script version 5.6.
  • Disk space sufficient on the machine to support the VirtualCenter database and the template upload directory.
The VirtualCenter server may run on the same machine as the VirtualCenter client, or may be installed separately on another Windows system.
The VirtualCenter server can also be installed in a virtual machine.

The VirtualCenter database must have one of these compatible database formats:
  • Microsoft Access (default)

    You do not need to have a Microsoft Access database installed to use this option. VirtualCenter stores the database in Microsoft Access format.

    Note: Using the Microsoft Access database for production environments is not recommended. It is intended for demonstration and trial purposes only.

    For production environments, use either the SQL Server or Oracle database.

  • Microsoft SQL Server 2000
  • Microsoft SQL Server 7
  • Oracle 8i, Oracle 9i, and Oracle 10g
This information is also contained in the VirtualCenter 1.4.x Support Documentation.

Additional Information

End of Support Life for Microsoft Access Databases

Support for Microsoft Access was discontinued with VMware VirtualCenter version 2.0. VirtualCenter 2.5 comes with a bundled version of Microsoft SQL Server
2005 Express for small deployments (up to 5 hosts and 50 virtual machines).
 
This information is also contained in the Installation Guide .

For any questions regarding compatibility, see the VMware Infrastructure Compatibility Matrixes .

Tags

install-vcenter install-vcenter-fails vcenter-software-hardware-requirements

See Also

Update History

12/07/2011 - Added vCenter Server 5.x information. 03/29/2011 - Updated for vCenter Server 4.x. Updated article to reflect newest terminology. 09/10/2010 - Changed title to read Minimum system requirements for installing VirtualCenter 2.x and below. 03/07/2012 - Added additional supported guest operating systems for vCenter Server 5.0 10/17/2013 - Added vCenter Server 5.5 to product versions

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