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Add TP-Link USB 3.0 Ethernet Adapter to Intel NUC with VMware ESXi

Pradeep Singh | 4th Sep 2017


Hardware and Software Details:

Following is the list of Hardware and Software components I used for this article –

Follow these steps to install the Driver for the TP-Link USB 3.0 to Gigabit Ethernet Network Adapter to ESXi running on Intel Nuc Skull Canyon –

1. Download USB Ethernet Driver for ESXi 6.0:

Download the image from the following link –

Just for the backup, I have uploaded this file to my GitHub Repo – Link

2. Enable SSH to ESXi 6.0:

  1. Login to the VMware vSphere Client (vCenter Server).
  2. Select the ESXi Host from Inventory
  3. Click on “Configure” Tab
  4. Scroll Down to “System –> Security Profile”
  5. Locate “SSH” service and start it.

3. Upload Firmware File to ESXi Host:

3.1 Upload the file on ESXi using “sftp” or secure ftp client such as FileZilla

PRADEESI-M-91HZ:Desktop pradeesi$ sftp root@
Connected to
sftp> put r8152-2.06.0-4_esxi60.vib 
Uploading r8152-2.06.0-4_esxi60.vib to /r8152-2.06.0-4_esxi60.vib
r8152-2.06.0-4_esxi60.vib                                                                                               100%   34KB  34.2KB/s   00:00    

3.2 Move the Firmware file to “/var/log/vmware/” directory using the following command

cp r8152-2.06.0-4_esxi60.vib /var/log/vmware/ 

4. Install the Firmware:

Install the firmware using the following command –

esxcli software vib install -v /var/log/vmware/r8152-2.06.0-4_esxi60.vib -f

Following is the console output for this command –

[root@localhost:~] esxcli software vib install -v /var/log/vmware/r8152-2.06.0-4_esxi60.vib -f
Installation Result
Message: Operation finished successfully.
Reboot Required: false
VIBs Installed: Realtek_bootbank_r8152_2.06.0-4
VIBs Removed: 
VIBs Skipped: 

5. Check the NIC Cards:

List the available NIC cards using the “esxcfg-nics -l” command. You should be able to see the USB NIC Card in the list –

[root@localhost:~] esxcfg-nics -l
Name PCI Driver Link Speed Duplex MAC Address MTU Description 
vmnic0 0000:00:1f.6 e1000e Up 1000Mbps Full 00:1f:c6:9c:bd:8c 1500 Intel Corporation Ethernet Connection (2) I219-LM
vmnic32 Pseudo r8152 Up 1000Mbps Full c0:25:e9:2d:af:38 1500 Unknown Unknown 


Want a USB Ethernet driver for ESXi? You can have two

Functional USB 3.0 Ethernet Adapter (NIC) driver for ESXi 5.5 & 6.0

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