Author Archives: Mike Lane

Installing VMware vSphere ESXi 5.5 on an Intel (Haswell) NUC (D34010WYH1)

Intel NUC

My vSphere hardware has long been due an update and I have finally got my hands on an Intel NUC ! Here is my (completely un-supported) parts list:

The D34010WYH1 NUC gives me the option of storing virtual machines on a 2.5 inch HDD or SSD inside the NUC (and the 1TB WD Red drive gives me a good amount of local storage to play around with). The RAM is low voltage (1.35v) which is required. The 32 Gb USB 3 flash drive is over-kill (only 4GB is required for vSphere 5.5) but it is very small (and pretty fast too). I needed the HDMI adapter to connect the NUC to my HDTV during vSphere installation.

The installation process is quite straight-forward and you will need the following:

Before installing vSphere we need to create a custom .iso image that includes the two .vib drivers that we downloaded. This is done using ESXi Customizer.

ESXi-Customizer 01

The first time you run ESXi Customizer select the vSphere 5.5 ,iso image and the network driver (net-e1000e-2.3.2.x86_64.vib) to create a customized image.

Run ESXi Customizer again and this time select the customized .iso image and add the sata driver (sata-xahci-1.10-1.x86_64.vib) to create a final customized .iso image.

I chose to burn my customized .iso to CD and install using a USB DVD drive – if you want to use a flash drive to install you will need to use UNetbootin.


In UNetbootin select the Diskimage radio button and then browse to the location of your final custom .iso. Select the flash drive to copy files to and then click the OK button.

In the BIOS of my NUC I disabled the UEFI option in the Boot menu. After that I booted from my USB DVD drive and installed vSphere to a USB 3 flash drive.

[I did test installing from one flash drive to another too and this also worked without any issues].


Ubuntu 14.04 (Trusty Tahr) x86 – Minor Installation Issues


I experienced two issues trying to install Ubuntu 14.04 x86 on my old laptop today:

  • ubi-partman crashed (I clicked Continue)
  • Installation hung Getting the time from a network time server

I encountered these issues booting from DVD and then clicking on the Install Ubuntu button in the installer.

Fortunately I did not encounter either of these issues when I rebooted and then clicked Try Ubuntu in the installer and then installed Ubuntu from the Live DVD session.



Windows 8.x – List Installed Software

Windows 8 Logo

It is often useful to generate a list of installed software on a system and here is a quick and easy way to do it.

Open an Administrator Command Prompt using one of these methods:

  • Press Windows + x on the keyboard and then select Command Prompt (Admin) from the pop-up menu
  • On the Windows Start Screen swipe up from the bottom and then tap and hold the Command Prompt icon and then tap Run as administrator on the toolbar

Type the following command to enter the Windows Management Instrumentation Command-line (WMIC):


To generate a list of installed software in a file called C:\InstalledSoftware.txt enter this command:

/output:C:\InstalledSoftware.txt product get name,version

It doesn’t look like this method lists Windows Store Apps very well, but they are easily installed from the Store (particularly if you have Apps synced between devices).


Quick Tip: Turn Off Facebook Chat (Windows Store App)

Windows 8 Logo

The Windows Store Facebook app was recently updated and now there is an option to turn off Facebook chat.

Simply click or tap the gear icon at the bottom right of the screen and then select Turn Off Chat.


I’m sure that I am not the only one who has been waiting a while for this feature!

Windows 8.1 – VMware Player and Hyper-V are not compatible

Windows 8 Logo

I have the Hyper-V role enabled on Windows 8.1 for VS Express Windows Phone Emulation. The problem is this error when I try to run a VMWare Player virtual machine:

VMware Player and Hyper-V are not compatible. Remove the Hyper-V role from the system before running VMware Player.

The workaround is to disable Hyper-V so that you can use VMWare.

To do this open an Administrator Command Prompt, enter this command and then reboot:

bcdedit /set hypervisorlaunchtype off

Hyper-V can be enabled again with this command (which also requires a reboot):

bcdedit /set hypervisorlaunchtype auto


Windows 8.1 – Enabling AHCI after installing Windows

Windows 8 Logo

I have Windows 8.1 installed on an SSD but my SATA controller in the BIOS has been configured to IDE rather than AHCI ever since Windows was installed.

I found a quick and simple guide for enabling AHCI here:

  • Press Ctrl + X and select Command Prompt (A)dmin from the menu and then enter the following command:
bcdedit /set {current} safeboot minimal
  • Reboot and then enter the BIOS (typically press F1, F2, F10 or Delete)
  • Change the SATA drive setting to AHCI and exit the BIOS save settings.
  • Windows will boot into Safe Mode.
  • Open an Administrator Command Prompt again and enter the following command to disable Safe Mode boot:
bcdedit /deletevalue {current} safeboot
  • Reboot

I wish that I had done this sooner – my system does feel more responsive since this change!

Windows 8.1 – 100% Drive Activity (Wonky SATA Cable)

Windows 8 Logo

I’ve been having issues with 100% drive activity on Windows 8.1 and had a chance to look at it today.

I ran chkdsk /r on my SSD but this didn’t help. I opened Performance Monitor to have a look at things and had a few tabs in my browser open with troubleshooting tips. When I noticed that my sata DVD drive was not being detected by the OS I opted to open up the case.

I unplugged all of my sata cables and plugged them back in (and checked the power connections for good measure).

After that everything has been working fine – sometimes it is the simple things that make all the difference!

Quick-Tip – Delete Media from Windows 8 Phone (Nokia Lumia 520)


Deleting music and video from Windows 8 Phone is not immediately intuitive because after opening the Music + Videos app the tap and hold function only brings up Pin to Start option.

To actually delete a file you have to swipe over to collection first – so to delete a video for example:

Tap Music + Videos, swipe to collection and then tap on videos. Tap and hold on the item you want to delete and then tap delete from the pop-up menu.

Windows 8.1 – Remove Un-needed Wireless Networks

Windows 8 Logo

If you have un-needed wireless networks listed in the Windows 8.1 GUI you will have to open up an Administrator Command Prompt to manually remove them.

Press Windows + X on the keyboard and then click on Command Prompt (Admin).

Enter the following command to display your saved wireless networks:

netsh wlan show profiles

netsh wlan show profiles

Next delete the desired profile. For example to remove the “PricklyG” network pictured above:

netsh wlan delete profile name="PricklyG"

netsh wlan delete profile name