How to learn about VMware Products

How to learn about and use VMware Products in a Home Lab

I was inspired to create this Blog after VMware EOA (End of Availability) the free ESXi product. There were some articles saying that people just getting into IT Technology roles will now not be able to learn about VMware Products. This is NOT True and I wanted to share some examples of how people can still learn about Virtualization with VMware Products in a Home Lab environment.

I have been in the IT Industry for many years and there is a quote that I use all the time for people that want to advance their IT skills. “9 - 5 pay the bills but 5 - 10 advances your career”.

There are still many options to learn about VMware Products. Here are some items that can be used to advance your knowledge:

You also don’t need to have the newest, fastest, most advanced hardware if you just want to learn about the VMware Products. The hardware I have to create this Blog Post is an older Apple MacBook Pro that is no longer supported and will not run the latest versions of MAC OS. I installed Ubuntu Desktop on this Apple Laptop and then installed VMware Workstation. This setup is OK for learning and testing. I have a Raspberry PI 4 with 8 GB memory to install ESXi ARM Edition.

Items to know when setting up a Home Lab environment:

  • VMware ESXi | Default Evaluation period is 60 days. This will enable you to have a full featured host to test anything you want to learn for 60 days.
  • VMware Workstation | Non-Commercial use is free to use
  • VMware Fusion | Non-Commercial use is free to use
  • Vmware ESXi ARM Edition | Default Evaluation period is 180 days

To get access to additional VMware Software, Take a look at VMUG Advantage:

  • Link to VMUG Advantage
  • You do have to purchase VMUG Advantage. If you attend a local VMUG event, you will often get coupons for a discount to purchase VMUG Advantage.
  • This is one of the best vCommunity Programs you can join and it will include licenses for many of the VMware solutions which are valid for a year.

VMware Workstation

Screen Shot of my MacBook Pro Resources. Doesn’t need to be latest and greatest to learn.

Click to see Larger Image of Screen Shot

Screen Shot of VMware Workstation running a Ubuntu Server. Great way to learn.

Click to see Larger Image of Screen Shot

When I write my blogs, I always say there are many ways to accomplish the same task. This article is just one way that you could accomplish this task. I am showing what I felt was a good way to complete the use case but every organization/environment will be different. There is no right or wrong way to complete the tasks in this article.

  • If you found this Blog article useful and it helped you, Buy me a coffee to start my day.