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HP ESXi Installation to a USB

Occasional Contributor

HP ESXi Installation to a USB



I currently have an the ESXi 5.0 U1 ISO File burned to a CD already.

My server is as follows:

HP DL380 G6

2x Intel Xeon x5560

16gb Ram

No hard drives

Dvd combo drive


My installation steps are as follows:

  1. Plug the Cruzer Fit (4gb) to an internal port
  2. Switch on the HP DL 380 G6
  3. Boot into the installer
  4. Select the USB Drive for installation
  5. Follow the installation instructions
  6. Reboot once installation is complete

Before the reboot the CD is automatically ejected.

  1. Enter the bios
  2. Set the boot priority to the USB first

My problem lies here, when it reboots it does not find the ESXi.

And it keeps cycling through all the boot options


Any advise?




Andre Soetadji


Re: HP ESXi Installation to a USB



Have you enabled Legacy USB Support in BIOS?

Is the USB Key (SanDisk) you are using, is this compatible with server and/or VMware?



BIOS support for USB devices
The system BIOS (ROM) requires additional functionality to support initializing and booting a USB drive key, as well as any other USB device. This is termed “legacy USB support” by HP. Basically, the system BIOS will attempt to boot the drive key as a mass storage device, thereby enabling the full capacity of the device. However, most drive key devices do not come properly formatted, meaning there is nothing for the system to boot. This is similar to attempting to boot a blank floppy diskette. The system BIOS would support initializing and booting that device, but no boot files are available to execute. The HP drive key Smart Component lands bootable files that the system BIOS can execute. This means that to boot a drive key, the server requires system BIOS support, as well as drive key support.
The system BIOS will handle booting and executing files from the drive key until an operating system loads and the USB driver is loaded. At this point, the system BIOS is no longer involved in the support for the device.


Under BIOS, the legacy USB support is available @ System Options menu -> USB Options -> USB Control

When Legacy USB Disabled is selected, all USB ports are enabled under a USB-aware OS, but USB is not supported during POST or RBSU.


Good Luck!

Accept or Kudo

Occasional Contributor

Re: HP ESXi Installation to a USB

I can install ESXi 4.1 U2 on that specific USB and run it using the HP DL380 G6 i mentioned in the first post.


All USB are enabled under the USB Control the options chosen is USB Enabled