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ESXi: Have You Made The Switch?

With the release of 4.1 Update 1, we probably have all seen the last release of ESX. That said, and with VMware being very clear, a lot of us have yet to begin the migration, myself included. While the idea behind ESXi is a great one, most of us have grown fond to the service console, and the familiarity of ESX. I can relate, and understand, why so many people have held off on making the switch. Change is hard, but it must be done.

Implementing ESXi doesn’t mean the end of CLI management, just the way we go about leveraging it. This is accomplished via RCLI, or Remote Command Line Interface. There is the vMA, or the Virtual Machine Assistant, that allows you to centrally manage your ESXi host via a CLI. Though personally, with the addition of Esx-Cli included in the latest build of PowerCLI, I really see limited use for it. Powershell and PowerCLI have come a lot way and really make management task quite simple and with a quick search on the net, you can find a script for almost any task. ESXi also allows for a faster installation, and can be scripted. It also boots much quicker than ESX. It also creates a much smaller surface area for a malicious attack.

Its obvious VMware thinks ESXi is ready for primetime in an enterprise environment, and I have to agree. I have already migrated my home lab to ESXi 4.1 and am working to familiarize myself with the nuances and differences of the new hypervisor. The question is, how much longer will, and can, you wait to make the switch yourself.

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