How to access ESX Server in Different ways? What are the major differences in these?

Hi Friends….

Today i want to discuss about the types of access that an ESX Server can provide.  Some of you guys already may be familiar with some types management interfaces, for example if you want to manage a Linksys router or a DSL modem or a Switch what you will do is you just type the IP address of that device in the internet explorer or any other web browser, so that you will get a beautiful management interface including all the options available in that devices software. Am I Right? So here what’s happening is, most of the devices comes command based operating systems. But as you know our world is become very much comfortable with Graphical interfaces like Windows, most of the time we will prefer to use the GUI. The work can be done with a GUI is very slow when compared to CUI, but using GUI there is no need to remember all commands or options available in that software. This is the main advantage of GUI. In the same way ESX Server also comes with UNIX based OS(Remember Kernel is VMware Proprietary, the Service console only RedHat Based) , but it is very difficult to manage it using those command for a basic windows guy. That is the reason why they implemented the GUI interface as Windows Based (may be). Apart from the GUI access, ESX server can be managed using the CUI also. Enough introduction right, so lets move on to the types of Access and their Pro’s and Con’s.

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                 LINKSYS GUI                                                               CISCO GUI

Types of ESX Server access:

There are five types of access available for ESX servers.

Console access to the Service Console

image Directly if you are sitting in front of the ESX Server system, you can access ESX Server using the UNIX based authentication. To do that you need to press Alt+F1 to get the login prompt. From there using root credentials you can do what ever you want.

 

Disadvantages
you must be at the console (or connect using an IP KVM) and
you must know Linux to accomplish your task (no GUI).

SSH to the Service Console
You can SSH to the console prompt of an ESX server and receive the same Linux imagetext console access as I showed above. Telnet is not allowed. To use this method, the ESX server must be working on the network and you must have an SSH client on your PC to connect. Again, in this mode, you don’t get a GUI interface. But you can access the machine remotely.
VMware Virtual Infrastructure (VI) Web Access to the ESX Server
image This is the VMware VI Web Access interface. You can access ESX Server from a web browser using the root credentials(UNIX type authentications).

Advantages

The benefit to using this is that you get a GUI client for your ESX server without having to install a client on your local machine.

Disadvantages

The downside to the web interface is that you can only perform basic ESX functions like controlling existing machines (start/stop/pause) and console remote access. You cannot add new VMs, work with VM storage, or VM networks. Still, this is a great interface if you just need to check the status of your ESX VMs, restart a VM, or use console remote control.
image VMware Virtual Infrastructure Client (VI Client) to the Single ESX Server
The benefits to the VI client are that you have full access to do whatever is needed on the ESX Server and you get a GUI client to do it in. The only downside is that you must install the VI client application to do this. However, the installation is negligible and the VI client is the absolute best way to administer your ESX Server.

 
VMware Virtual Infrastructure Client (VI Client) to the Virtual Center Server (VC Server)

From this VI VC interface, you can manage all ESX servers, VM storage, VM networks, and more. Virtual Center, of course, is an optional product that requires additional licenses and hardware. All the enterprise futures are only available with VC access.

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