Nutanix Series – Installing Nutanix CE 5.6 on VMware ESXi – ISO Method

Today I finally managed to get around to starting my Nutanix journey, by getting Nutanix Community Edition installed on our VMware lab. Nutanix has been a technology I’ve been closely following for the last 12 months. I’ve heard some great things from both customers and fellow techies about this technology, but never managed to take a deeper look until now. The main driver behind getting involved has been the announcement that Veeam will be supporting the Acropolis Hypervisor, and i was fortunate enough to be accepted on the beta program for Veeam integration with AHV.

First things first, I needed to get Nutanix CE 5.6 nested within our existing VMware lab environment. For this demonstration i am using the ISO method, opposed to the image method that’s well documented.

Caveat: Within our lab environment we are running ESXi 6.0 without vCentre (at the moment)

Download link: HERE

Create your virtual machine, there are some minimum specifications for the VM, i have gone with the following:



SCSI0:0 will be used for our HDD tier

SCSI0:1 will be used for our SSD tier

SCSI0:2 will be used for the AHV installation




CENTOS 4/5/6/7 (64-bit) is the version used.

As we aren’t using an SSD tier within the lab, we need to mimic SSD. To complete this Edit Settings on your VM, and navigate to VM Options > General > Configuration Parameters and add the following row:


Now we need to ensure we expose hardware assisted virtualisation for the virtual machine. Within VMware vSphere Web Client this is a tick box:


We will amend the .vmx file using VI

vhv.enable = “TRUE”

featMask.vm.hv.capable = “Min:1”

For assistance on amending .vmx files with VI: HERE

Now mount the ISO File to the Virtual machine and boot:


Hit CE Installer

Configure IP details


AHV will now install

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