VMware agrees that Flash is not the solution for the long-term. Our long-term direction is to utilize HTML5. In vSphere 6.5, we have released a supported version of an HTML5 based web client which we call “vSphere Client”. What’s New in vSphere 6.5: vCenter management clients
This vSphere HTML5 Web Client evolved from an application initially published as a Fling (“Flings are apps and tools built by our engineers and community that are intended to be played with and explored”). The Web Client made available in vCenter is a fully supported version of the fling. However, VMware updates the fling version of the client more often. Even if the fling version is not supported, it’s still good to play with what will eventually graduate to a supported version.
In this article I will guide you through the initial configuration of vSphere HTML5 Web Client Fling. We will install the fling in parallel with the existing vCenter Server and will make no permanent changes at vCenter level. If you want to update an already existing installation of the fling, check this article: How to Update vSphere HTML5 Web Client Fling.
I will demonstrate how to install vSphere HTML5 Web Client Fling on top of vCenter Server Appliance 6.5 with an embedded PSC.
I will start the process with the download of the OVA file. Go to the VMware Fling repository and download the latest version available (in my case v3.27 – Build 7055108, released on 4th November 2017). Check “I have read…” checkbox and choose the OVA file from the drop down list (in my case h5ngcVA-18.104.22.168-7055108_OVF10.ova). You can then click on “Download” button and wait for the archive to be downloaded.
Prepare vCenter Server Appliance
For vSphere HTML5 Web Client Fling auto registration commands to work, we have to enable bash as the default shell in vCenter Server Appliance. SSH into the vCSA server and run these commands:
shell.set –enable True
/usr/bin/chsh -s “/bin/bash” root
[Optional] If you want to revert to appliancesh as default shell, after the vSphere HTML5 Web Client Fling installation is completed, you can run this command:
/usr/bin/chsh -s /bin/appliancesh root
Deploy vSphere HTML5 Web Client Fling OVF Template
Go to vSphere Web Client at the desired level (datacenter/cluster/host) and choose “Deploy OVF Template” link from the “Actions” menu. Once the wizard loads, click on “Local File”, then click on “Browse…” button and select the OVA file downloaded at the beginning of the article. Click “Next”.
We’re on second step of the wizard, “Select name and location”. Write the name you want for the appliance and select the datacenter or the required folder. Click “Next”.
Select the resource where you want to deploy the appliance (host, cluster, resource pool, vapp). Click “Next”.
Review the details of the vSphere appliance, then click “Next”.
Read the license agreement, click “Accept” and then click “Next”.
You have now the option to select storage details. Select a virtual disk format (as this is a test environment, I selected Thin provision) and any required VM storage policy. Select the required datastore. Click “Next”.
We need now to configure the networking. Select the port group, choose from IPv4 and IPv6, and decide if you want a static allocated IP or a dynamic DHCP one. Click “Next”.
As on previously step I chose manual IP allocation, I now have to offer the networking details. When all required fields are completed, click “Next”.
Review the provided information. If everything is correct, click “Finish”.
Look for deployment tasks in the “Recent Tasks” panel. Wait for all the task to complete.
Power on the Sphere HTML5 Web Client Fling VM. Wait for the VMware Tools to start and for DNS Name/IP Addresses fields to populate.
Open a browser and visit https://ApplianceIP:5490. Ignore the certificate warning and go to login page. Authenticate using default root credentials (Username: root; Password: demova).
We are in the Configuration page now. Provide SSO details (in my case the vCenter server and the corresponding root credentials). Click “Configure”.
After a short wait period, the vSphere HTML5 Web Client Fling will complete the configuration and you will see a green “Running” status. You can close the appliance tab now.
Access vSphere HTML5 Web Client Fling
Open a new tab in your favorite browser and visit https”//ApplianceIP/ui. You will be redirected to the SSO login page. Use your normal credentials for accessing vSphere Client.
You see now the “Hosts” view of the new vSphere HTML5 Web Client Fling. Happy VM managing 🙂