You can configure ESXi to dump the vmkernel memory to a network server, rather than to a disk, when the system has encountered a critical failure. Install vSphere ESXi Dump Collector to collect such memory dumps over the network.

Note

In the vCenter Server Appliance, the ESXi Dump Collector is installed and enabled by default. These instructions apply to Windows-based deployments.

For instructions on configuring ESXi to dump kernel memory to the network server, see Configure ESXi Dump Collector with ESXCLI. The Dump Collector is most useful for datacenters where ESXi hosts are configured using the Auto Deploy process, so it might not have local storage. You can also install the Dump Collector for ESXi hosts that do have local storage, as an additional location where vmkernel memory dumps can be redirected when critical failures occur.

You can install the Dump Collector on the same machine as the associated vCenter Server, or on a different machine that has network connection to the vCenter Server. ESXi Dump Collector does not support vSphere distributed switches in ESXi 5.0.

The Dump Collector service binds to an IPv4 address for communication with vCenter Server, and does not support IPv6. The vCenter Server can be on a host machine in an IPv4-only, IPv4/IPv6 mixed-mode, or IPv6-only network environment, but the machine that connects to the vCenter Server through the vSphere Client must have an IPv4 address for the Dump Collector service to work.

Verify that you have administrator privileges

Verify that the host machine has Windows Installer 3.0 or later.

Verify that the host machine has a supported processor and operating system. The Dump Collector supports the same processors and operating systems as vCenter Server. See vCenter Server Software Requirements and vCenter Server and vSphere Client Hardware Requirements.

Verify that the host machine has a valid IPv4 address. You can install the Dump Collector on a machine in an IPv4-only or IPv4/IPv6 mixed-mode network environment, but you cannot install the Dump Collector on a machine in an IPv6-only environment.

If you are using a network location for the Dump Collector repository, make sure the network location is mounted.

Gather the following information to complete the installation:

The location to install the Dump Collector to, if you are not using the default location.

The location for the Dump Collector repository where the dump files will be stored.

(Optional) The maximum size for the Dump Collector repository. The specified network location must have at least that much free space.

Whether to install the Dump Collector as a standalone instance or to integrate the Dump Collector with a vCenter Server. The Dump Collector is not supported for integration with vCenter Server versions earlier than version 5.0.

If the Dump Collector is integrated with a vCenter Server, the address and credentials for the vCenter Server: IP address or name, HTTP port, user name, and password.

The Dump Collector server port, if you are not using the default setting.

The host name or IP address to identify the Dump Collector on the network.

1

In the software installer directory, double-click the autorun.exe file to start the installer.

2

Select VMware ESXi Dump Collector and click Install.

3

Follow the wizard prompts to complete the installation.