ESXi with UEFI iSCSI boot on Raspberry Pi

ESXi with UEFI iSCSI boot on Raspberry Pi


Setup iSCSI disk

  • Create iSCSI Target and LUN in Synology
  • Download RPi4 UEFI Firmware, and unzip it to a SD card which formatted as FAT32 partition
  • Boot from the SD card, and perform following tasks using UEFI menu
    • Disable 3G memory limit
      Device Manager => Raspberry Pi Configuration => Advanced Configuration => Limit RAM to 3 GB)
    • Create device which mapped to iSCSI target
      Device Manager => iSCSI Configuration => Add an Attempt

After Attempt 1 created, Reset (restart) Raspberry Pi. Now, in Boot Manager, should see UEFI SYNOLOGY iSCSI Storage.

Setup boot order

  • Change Boot order and let it before other network boot, otherwise, there will be too much waiting time.

Prepare ESXi installation disk

  • Download and flush VMware-VMvisor-Installer-7.0.0-xxxx.aarch64.iso to USB device

Install ESXi

  • Reset (Reboot) again, and in UEFI menu select boot from USB device
  • Then perform ESXi installation, and select iSCSI disk as target

After installation completed, take out ESXi installation USB, then another reset is required,

Configure ESXi

  • Boot into iSCSI
  • Change ESXi name, etc.


Unable to see iSCSI disk in Boot Manager

Most likely is the iSCSI configuration wrong.

  • Check iSCSI Target Name
  • Check iSCSI Target IP
  • Check iSCSI LUN ID (This issue costed me a few hours)
  • Check User/Password

Synchronous Exception

After installation complete, suddenly cannot boot into any destination, and just show error Synchronous Exception.

End up, I have to recopy UEFI image into micro SD card, redo iSCSI configuration. Luckily the iSCSI has no issue, which contains installed ESXi image.


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Synchronous Exception at 0x00000000371013D8 #97

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