How to install ESXi on those darn cheap-ass SanDisk Cruzer fit sticks

It took me some time to figure out, but for my next batch of ESXi hosts for our cloud platform I simply refused to go to the WanChai computer center again to buy new USB sticks, as I still had a batch of those SanDisk Cruzer Fit sticks lying around from my previous attempt. Last time, because of time constraints, I had to take the easy route and go and buy HP branded stuff for our army of BL495. But today we received another 16 or so 495’ers to fill up another enclosure, and as said, I refused to go out to the computer-center to buy sticks again, it bloody pouring out there 🙂

So I dug in to this and with a little help from google and the syslog logs, I figured it out, It seems that ESXi wan’t to format the USB stick with a GPT partition, which some sticks like these SanDisk Cruzers, won’t take. Now to force the installed to use classic MBR, upon install, on the boot screen press SHIFT-O for the boot options of runweasel.

Remove whatever you see there and just replace it with runweasel formatwithmbr press enter, and voila, your install will proceed, format the stick, install the binaries, and most important, boot from it on next reboot.