Windows Server 2012 on ESXi 4.1


My I.T infrastructure at home has 4 ESXi 4.1 servers which host a number of VMs that are used for home and work purposes.  However, my organically grown infrastructure has now reached the point where it needs re-organising.  As part of that I’m installing new A/D controllers and decided to use Server 2012.

And then found that ESXi 4.1 doesn’t support it.  Try it and you’ll get the Server 2012 sad face appearing.  I don’t have time just now to update to ESX5.X on my servers, so I hunted around the Internet to see if there was a workaround.

I found these set of instructions ( really don’t do this for a production environment )

    • Create a  new VM over the vSphere Client.
    • As “Guest Operating System” use Microsoft Windows Server 2008 R2 (64-bit)
    • After VM has been created but before first power on, download the following  bios file and upload it to your ESXi datastore into the folder of the VM
    • Now open the .vmx file of the new VM and add the follwing lines
bios440.filename = "bios.440.rom"
mce.enable = TRUE
cpuid.hypervisor.v0 = FALSE
vmGenCounter.enable = FALSE
    • Power on VM and Server 2012 will install and run

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