Before you deploy the vCenter Server appliance, you must download the vCenter Server installer ISO file and mount it to a network virtual machine or physical server from which you want to perform the deployment.

The machine from which you deploy the appliance must run on a Windows, Linux, or Mac operating system that meets the operating system requirements. See System Requirements for the vCenter Server Installer.

System Requirements for the vCenter Server Installer

You can run the vCenter Server GUI or CLI installer from a network client machine that is running on a Windows, Linux, or Mac operating system of a supported version.

To ensure optimal performance of the GUI and CLI installers, use a client machine that meets the minimum hardware requirements.

Table 1. System Requirements for the GUI and CLI Installers
Operating System Supported Versions Minimum Hardware Configuration for Optimal Performance
  • Windows 10, 11
  • Windows 2016 x64 bit
  • Windows 2019 x64 bit
  • Windows 2022 x64 bit
4 GB RAM, 2 CPU having 4 cores with 2.3 GHz, 32 GB hard disk, 1 NIC
  • SUSE 15
  • Ubuntu 18.04, 20.04, 21.10
4 GB RAM, 1 CPU having 2 cores with 2.3 GHz, 16 GB hard disk, 1 NIC
Note: The CLI installer requires 64-bit OS.
  • macOS 10.15, 11, 12
  • macOS Catalina, Big Sur, Monterey
8 GB RAM, 1 CPU having 4 cores with 2.4 GHz, 150 GB hard disk, 1 NIC
Note: For client machines that run on Mac 10.15 or later, concurrent GUI deployments of multiple appliances are unsupported. You must deploy the appliances in a sequence.
Note: Visual C++ redistributable libraries need to be installed to run the CLI installer on versions of Windows older than Windows 10. The Microsoft installers for these libraries are located in the vcsa-cli-installer/win32/vcredist directory.
Note: Deploying the vCenter Server appliance with the GUI requires a minimum resolution of 1024x768 to properly display. Lower resolutions can truncate the UI elements.

Download and Mount the vCenter Server Installer

VMware releases the vCenter Server appliance ISO image, which contains GUI and CLI installers for the vCenter Server appliance.

With the GUI and CLI executable files that are included in the vCenter Server installer, you can:
  • Deploy the vCenter Server appliance.
  • Upgrade the vCenter Server appliance.
  • Converge older versions of vCenter Server with an external Platform Services Controller to the current version of vCenter Server.
  • Restore a vCenter Server appliance from a file-based backup.



  1. Log in to VMware Customer Connect.
  2. Navigate to Products and Accounts > All Products.
  3. Find VMware vSphere and click View Download Components.
  4. Select a VMware vSphere version from the Select Version drop-down.
  5. Select a version of VMware vCenter Server and click GO TO DOWNLOADS.
  6. Download the vCenter Server appliance ISO image.
  7. Confirm that the md5sum is correct by using an MD5 checksum tool.
  8. Mount the ISO image to the client machine from which you want to deploy, upgrade, migrate, or restore the appliance.
    Note: ISO mounting software that does not allow more than eight directory levels, for example, MagicISO Maker on Windows, is unsupported.

    For Linux OS and Mac OS, Archive Manager is unsupported.

    For Mac OS, you can use DiskImageMounter.
    For Ubuntu 14.04, you can use Disk Image Mounter.
    For SUSE 12 OS, you can use the terminal.
    $ sudo mkdir mount_dir
    $ sudo mount -o loop VMware-vCSA-all-version_number-build_number.iso mount_dir
    Important: Due to a security change in MacOS Catalina, you must modify the security settings on your computer until the vCenter Server deployment completes. If you attempt to run the installer under MacOS Catalina without modifying the security settings, the vCenter Server installer reports the error: ovftool cannot be opened because the developer cannot be verified. For more information, see KB 79416.

What to do next

Open the readme.txt file and review the information about the other files and directories in the vCenter Server appliance ISO image.

Synchronizing Clocks on the vSphere Network

Verify that all components on the vSphere network have their clocks synchronized. If the clocks on the physical machines in your vSphere network are not synchronized, SSL certificates and SAML tokens, which are time-sensitive, might not be recognized as valid in communications between network machines.

Unsynchronized clocks can result in authentication problems, which can cause the installation to fail or prevent the vCenter Server vmware-vpxd service from starting.

Time inconsistencies in vSphere can cause the first boot of a component in your environment to fail at different services depending on where in the environment time is not accurate and when the time is synchronized. Problems most commonly occur when the target ESXi host for the destination vCenter Server is not synchronized with NTP or PTP. Similarly, issues can arise if the destination vCenter Server migrates to an ESXi host set to a different time due to fully automated DRS.

To avoid time synchronization issues, ensure that the following is correct before installing, migrating, or upgrading a vCenter Server instance.

  • The target ESXi host where the destination vCenter Server is to be deployed is synchronized to NTP or PTP.

  • The ESXi host running the source vCenter Server is synchronized to NTP or PTP.

  • When upgrading or migrating from vSphere 6.7 to vSphere 8.0, if the vCenter Server appliance is connected to an external Platform Services Controller, ensure the ESXi host running the external Platform Services Controller is synchronized to NTP or PTP.

  • If you are upgrading or migrating from vSphere 6.7 to vSphere 8.0, verify that the source vCenter Server or vCenter Server appliance and external Platform Services Controller have the correct time.

Verify that any Windows host machine on which vCenter Server runs is synchronized with the Network Time Server (NTP) server. See the VMware knowledge base article at

To synchronize ESXi clocks with an NTP or a PTP server, you can use the VMware Host Client. For information about editing the time configuration of an ESXi host, see topic Edit the Time Configuration of an ESXi Host in the VMware Host Client in the vSphere Single Host Management - VMware Host Client documentation.

To learn how to change time synchronization settings for vCenter Server, see topic Configure the System Time Zone and Time Synchronization Settings in the vCenter Server Configuration documentation.

To learn how to edit the time configuration for a host by using the vSphere Client, see topic Editing the Time Configuration Settings of a Host in the vCenter Server and Host Management documentation.

Synchronizing the Client and Server System Clock

To establish a secure TLS connection to a vCenter Server (the server), the system where you are running the CLI installer (the client) must not have its system clock slower or faster than the server's system clock by an acceptable limit (tolerance).

See Client Clock Tolerance for specific values for each deployment scenario.

Note: The client clock values are applicable only for vCenter Server 6.7 and later.
Table 2. Client Clock Tolerance
Deployment Scenario Clock Tolerance Connection Notes
Linking one vCenter Server with another vCenter Server When deploying the second vCenter Server, the clock tolerance for the client and the first vCenter Server must not exceed 10 minutes.
Installing a vCenter Server appliance using a container vCenter Server with a *._on_vc.json template. The maximum clock tolerance between the client and the container vCenter Server is 8 hours 20 minutes.