ESXi 5.1 with Intel I217 NIC Driver

So I recently pieced together a new workstation that will be my new Daily PC and ESXi Server during labs. Yes, I'll have to reboot and boot to the ESXi server but I have another netbook I use with vSphere, if anyone else has a solution to this feel free to share.

However the point of this post is to show the error I received during initial install and a possible solution for some.

My install steps are below..

I downloaded the ESXi 5.1 iso image from VMware website (I did have to create an account and they sent me a link in the email)
I created a bootable USB thumbdrive with the ESXi install files on a USB stick with a program called 'unetbootin-windows-585'
Booted from USB stick, began installation process of ESXi 5.1
After initial files were loaded I received an error stating network drivers were invalid.
After messing with BIOS and enabling various settings, nothing worked and I ended up reverting to previous settings.

After checking the internet I found out that the Intel I217-V NIC drivers were unsupported with ESXi 5.1 default configuration.

I followed some steps located here : You searched for ESXi Customizer |

1. Download an ESXi-Customizer (I downloaded version 2.7.1 as of 11/13/2013) - VMware Front Experience: ESXi-Customizer

I then went to this website :

2. Downloaded 2 files in the original post. (didnt need the 3rd raid file)
3. Open the ESXi customizer and injected 2 of the files the user 'mapd07' had instructed.
4. Re-created my USB stick as a bootable media with the newly created .iso file.
5. Changed BIOS settings
a. Advanced mode, under Boot, Find "Secure Boot" and Set it to Other OS.
b. CSM (Compadibility Support Module), set it to Enabled.
c. Save & Reboot

6. When you first boot from the USB that you just created and you get the Installer menu. make sure that you have the Install ESXi selected and press Tab key on your keyboard. You should see a command appearing and you should be able to edit this. At the end hit space and add: formatwithmdr

After this the install continues, you fit F11 a few times to continue the installation and that's about it. All in all the install takes about 15 - 20 minutes, the research for this all and the interim steps took quite a bit longer!

Hope this helps someone else.
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