With my recent trip down memory lane and getting to install ESX 1.0 for the very first time, I figured it would not be complete without also exploring the very first release of VMware VirtualCenter 1.0 released back in 2003!
As mentioned in the previous article, I started working with both ESX 2.5 and VirtualCenter 2.0, so I have not had the chance to experience versions prior at least until recently. For those that can recall, VirtualCenter and subsequent vCenter Server releases until vSphere 5.0, was still a Windows application and that meant I needed to find a version of Windows that would be compatible and ideally have all required library dependencies.
I was also pleasantly surprise that the original VirtualCenter 1.0 user manual was still available on VMware website. After some few trial/error, I eventually used Windows Server 2003 Web Edition (32-Bit) (apparently other editions had missing dependencies) and that allowed me to install VirtualCenter application without any issues. In fact, I was actually surprised at how fast the installation was, but I am guessing that is due to using modern hardware as VirtualCenter 1.0 was released back in 2003 and not to mention the feature set is no where close to what it is today.
Nonetheless, it was pretty cool experience and thank goodness we had embedded database option back in those days as I had no interests in setting up an external ODBC connection 🙂 Unfourntately, a challenge with using such old software is being able to find license keys and I was not able to obtain 1.x keys to be able to exercise ESX host add, which funny enough does not support ESX 1.0 but rather the first release of VirtualCenter 1.0 only started supporting ESX 2.0.1, so more fun trivial.
For those interested, you can experience the installation process with the video below: