PowerCLI Basics – Create custom ESXi ISO image

Here is a quick post on how to create a custom ESXi ISO image using PowerCLI.

Cmdlets used and the corresponding reference page:

  1. First, connect to the vCenter Server: PowerCLI C:> Connect-VIServer <IP_or_FQDN>
  2. Next, add the ESXi offline bundle to the depot: PowerCLI C:> Add-EsxSoftwareDepot C:VMware-ESXi-5.5.0-1331820-depot.zip
  3. Add a custom driver to the depot. I used the iSCSI Driver for Emulex: PowerCLI C:> Add-EsxSoftwareDepot C:be2iscsi-10.0.727.44-offline_bundle-1525244.zip
  4. Clone the ESXi image: PowerCLI C:> New-EsxImageProfile -CloneProfile ESXi-5.5.0-1331820-standard -Name ESXi-5.5.0-custom -Vendor VMware
  5. Get the Emulex driver name: PowerCLI C:> Get-EsxSoftwarePackage -Vendor Emulex
  6. Add the driver to the new image: PowerCLI C:> Add-EsxSoftwarePackage -ImageProfile ESXi-5.5.0-custom -SoftwarePackage ima-be2iscsi,scsi-be2iscsi
  7. The new drivers should now be listed in the package.PowerCLI-ISO-1
  8. Export as ISO: PowerCLI C:> Export-EsxImageProfile -ImageProfile ESXi-5.5.0-custom -FilePath C:ESXi5.5.0-custom.iso -ExportToIso


Tested using vSphere PowerCLI 5.5.

Or you can use the ESXi image customization script by Andreas Peetz 🙂


– Marek.Z

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