Booting to ESXi 3.5 from a USB flash drive

The first thing you’ll need to do is make sure you find at least a 1gb flash drive.
Next use a program like Winrar or Peazip to get into your vmware install iso.
First open the iso file with Winrar. It is not associated by default so you will have to right click on it and do open with Winrar.
Next you will want to open a file named Install.TGZ then the file in that Install.TAR then usrlibvmwareinstallerVMware-VMvisor-big-3.5.0_Update_3-123629.i386.bz2VMware-VMvisor-big-3.5.0_Update_3-123629.i386.dd
Once you get this file extracted you need to download a program called Winimage.
Once WinImage is installed open it and go to Disk>restore virtual hard disk image on physical drive> From here select your thumb drive to write to it. Find the .dd file that you extracted in the previous step. Once you write this you should be all set. A VERY important note you need to go into your BIOS and select “USB Mass Storage Emulation Type” – “All Fixed Disc if you do not do this you will receive an error when trying to boot to the thumb drive.
lspci -vvnn > lspci.log
Now that we have the ESXi image on our thumb drive if we have an unsupported system there is one more step we need to go through. We need to edit 2 files for our storage controller and network card to be compatible.
)cd /tmp/
2) mkdir -p oem/etc/vmware
3) mkdir -p oem/usr/share/hwdata
4) cd oem/etc/vmware
5) cp /etc/vmware/
6) vi
add the necessary PCI data for your devices
7) close vi – press ESC and enter :wq
8) cd /tmp/oem/usr/share/hwdata
9) cp /usr/share/hwdata/pci.ids pci.ids
10) vi pci.ids
add the necessary description for your devices (this will be displayed in the console and VI Client)
11) close vi – press ESC and enter :wq
12) cd /tmp/oem
13) chown -R 201:201 ./etc
14) chown -R 201:201 ./usr
15) chmod -R 755 ./etc
16) chmod -R 755 ./usr
17) chmod 644 ./etc/vmware/
18) chmod 644 ./usr/share/hwdata/pci.ids
19) tar -cvzf oem.tgz etc usr
20) cp oem.tgz /bootbank/oem.tgz
21) cd /bootbank/
22) chmod 755 oem.tgz
23) reboot the host