Friday, December 10, 2010

Setting up sysprep for use with vCenter running in Windows Server 2008

When deploying a virtual machine through a vCenter Server running on Windows 2008, the customization option is not available.
According to this VMware KB article this issue occurs when the subfolders within the %ALLUSERSPROFILE%\VMware\VMware VirtualCenter\sysprep folder do not have the appropriate sysprep files for the version of Windows you are trying to deploy. The default directory for the sysprep files is
C:\ProgramData\VMware\VMware VirtualCenter\sysprep
By default, the ProgramData folder is a hidden folder in Windows 2008.

To view the ProgramData folder:
   1. Click Start > All Programs > Accessories > Windows Explorer.
   2. Click Organize > Folder > Search Options.
   3. Click the View tab.
   4. Select the Show hidden files and folders option and click OK.

The ProgramData folder has subfolders for each of your Windows operating system. You must extract and unzip the from all the Windows installation DVD's SUPPORT\TOOLS folder and place the files in the appropriate folder within the
C:\ProgramData\VMware\Infrastructure\VirtualCenter\sysprep folder.
Within a Windows 2003 64bit operating system, the \SUPPORT\TOOLS\ file of the installation media has these files:

The subfolders within the C:\ProgramData\VMware\Infrastructure\VirtualCenter\sysprep folder are:
    * 2k
    * svr2003
    * svr2003-64
    * xp
    * xp-64

For example if the machine to be deployed has a 64bit version of Windows 2003, you must place the sysprep files (contents of within the C:\ProgramData\VMware\Infrastructure\VirtualCenter\sysprep\srv2003-64 folder.

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