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I just installed VMWare Server on Windows 2008 R2. This is the the free version of VMWare. Are there any management tools I can download and use (that are free) to manage the VM's or am I stuck with the web interface? Ideally, I'd like to be able to use PowerShell but not sure what all I need or what I would need to pay for.



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When you say "manage" what do you mean exactly? What are you specifically looking for? Tools to monitor the VM's, tools to provision the VM's, etc. – joeqwerty Feb 7 '11 at 23:27
by manage I mean basic CRUD for VMs', Create them, Get info on them (read), Update them, and delete them. – Andy Schneider Feb 8 '11 at 15:13
up vote 1 down vote accepted

I've never tried this before but supposedly you can use the PowerCLI tools to manage VMs on VMware Server to a degree.

If you don't have anything else already running on this server (and it's 64-bit) you might be better off using ESXi. ESXi is the free bare metal hypervisor from VMware and it fully supports the PowerCLI tools plus you don't have the overhead of running on top of another OS. When you first install ESXi it will be in evaluation mode but you can request a key for free.

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As Scott stated, ESXi and PowerCLI is what you want to go with, but in order to use PowerCLI, or anything else that connects via the API for that matter, you will have to upgrade ESXi to a paid license.

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All you need to do is request a license key and they are free for ESXi. You still need to pay for ESX and vCenter though. :-) – Scott Keck-Warren Mar 4 '11 at 18:36
@Scott - That's incorrect. The API is available in the free version, but it's read only. See here: – JakeRobinson Mar 5 '11 at 5:16

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