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That is a challenge that most of us in Sales Engineering have when we either: need to get some training and skills developed around ESX server and VMware Virtual Infrastructure or.. need to test some software that is designed to integrate with VMware VI and ESX server. In addition to those needs (and others I am sure) the challenge of finding actual free systems to run ESX and ESXi servers along with VMware VirtualCenter Server is a big one. The ability to do this could also be very handy if you are studying to take the VCP test and need a sandbox to play in. So.. what better way to do it than in VMware’s own workstation product where you can create snapshots of known good states and roll back easily when needed?

I took a look at a video posted by David Davis How to run ESX Server and VI3 in VMware workstation 6.5 based on a whitepaper from (warning: 2mb download on the pdf whitepaper) that gives a very good step by step guide on configuring ESX and ESXi 3.5u2 plus the VI3 server and some iSCSI storage to work in Vmware Workstation 6.5

I have tried to do this before without the help of these resources with marginal success so I am looking forward to seeing how well this works out, especially on the new Dell Latitude E6400 and Dell Precision M4400 laptops we have that are running Vista Enterprise x64 with 8GB of system ram. Theoretically these systems should run a configuration like this very well since the setup David is talking about is on a system with 4GB of system ram.