vCloud Air - Building a Virtual Machine from Uploaded Media

Through the VMware Remote Console (VMRC) on vCloud Air, you can build a virtual machine from scratch and install an operating system from uploaded media—all without establishing an Internet connection to the virtual machine. Some other service providers only offer RDP, SSH, and DHCP, which means you have to use preconfigured templates. With vCloud Air, you can build templates from scratch without connecting the virtual machine to the Internet. If you have a fully scripted installation of an operating system, including all the drivers and patches needed, you can upload this image to vCloud Air and fully configure it.

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1. Create the vApp Container


To create the vApp container that will hold the new virtual machine:

  1. If you’re not already logged in, go to https://vchs.vmware.com/login and log in to vCloud Air.
  2. From the Dashboard, click the desired virtual data center.
  • In this example, we use the SHAREPOINT virtual data center.



3. Click the Virtual Machines tab, and then click Manage in vCloud Director to move to the vCloud Director UI.



4. Once in the vCloud Director UI, go to the My Cloud screen, and then click the Build New vApp icon to open the New vApp window.



5. In the New vApp – Name this vApp window, name the vApp, verify the leases, and then click Next.

  • In this example, we are building a Windows 2003 virtual machine, so the vApp’s name is something similar: win2k3-vApp.
  • In this example, the leases are left as they are.




6. In the New vApp – Add Virtual Machines window, click the New Virtual Machine button to set the properties for the virtual machine.



7. Complete the fields in the New Virtual Machine window:

  • Virtual Machine name: Name the virtual machine. For this example, the name is win2k3-vm.
  • Operating System Family: Select an operating system family. Here, it’s Microsoft Windows.
  • Operating System: Select an actual operating system. Here, it’s Windows Server 2003.
  • Number of CPUs, Memory, and Hard disk size: vCloud Air provides the ability to customize the virtual machine size. For this example, we chose to set it to 1 CPU, 2 GB of RAM, and a 16 GB hard drive.




8. Click OK to return to the New vApp – Add Virtual Machines window, and then click Next.

9. In the New vApp – Configure Resources window, verify that you have the correct virtual data center and storage profile, and then click Next.



10. In the New vApp – Configure Virtual Machines window, select the network to which the virtual machine will connect, make an IP assignment, and then click Next.

  • For this example, the virtual machine is connected to the isolated network and obtains a static IP address from the IP pool on the network.




11. In the New vApp – Configure Networking window, verify the settings, and then click Next.

12. In the New vApp – Ready to Complete window, click Finish to deploy the vApp.

2. Upload the Media


Once the vApp is created, you can upload the image media:

  1. Go to the My Cloud screen of the vCloud Director UI, and then click the Virtual Machines tab.
  2. Click the virtual machine, and then select Insert CD/DVD from Catalog.



  3. In the Insert CD window, select the desired media file, and then click Insert.
  • Here, we used the win2k3std image for the standard Windows 2003 virtual machine.
  • Note: Remember that this virtual machine is on an isolated network, not connected to the Internet. But you can still upload an image to the virtual machine because you have direct access to it through the VMware Remote Console (VMRC).


3. Build the Virtual Machine


Once the media is uploaded, you can begin to build the virtual machine from it:

  1. On the Virtual Machines tab of the vCloud Director UI, verify that the media upload completed.



  2. Click the virtual machine’s icon to open the console and verify that the image is attached to Windows.
  • From here, you can start building the new virtual machine.
  • Note: Remember that Windows will restart after all files are copied over, and once installation is complete, the DVD should be ejected from the disc drive.