VirtualCenter is an eager beaver. It really wants to start when your server does. The problem is that it starts too soon if it is installed on the same server as Microsoft SQL. The Windows event log will record two types of errors: the first will be in the Application log and detail how Microsoft SQL server is not ready to accept connections:
Event Type: Error Event Source: MSSQLSERVER Event Category: (4) Event ID: 17187 Date: 1/31/2008 Time: 12:10:26 AM User: N/A Computer: PUKKLE Description: SQL Server is not ready to accept new client connections; the connection has been closed. Wait a few minutes before trying again. If you have access to the error log, look for the informational message that indicates that SQL Server is ready before trying to connect again. [CLIENT: 192.168.0.47] For more information, see Help and Support Center at http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/events.asp. Data: 0000: 23 43 00 00 10 00 00 00 #C...... 0008: 07 00 00 00 50 00 55 00 ....P.U. 0010: 4b 00 4b 00 4c 00 45 00 K.K.L.E. 0018: 00 00 00 00 00 00 ......
The second error is in the System log and notifies the server administrator that the VirtualCenter service (vpxd) failed to start.
Event Type: Error Event Source: Service Control Manager Event Category: None Event ID: 7024 Date: 1/31/2008 Time: 12:11:02 AM User: N/A Computer: PUKKLE Description: The VMware VirtualCenter Server service terminated with service-specific error 2 (0x2). For more information, see Help and Support Center at http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/events.asp.
It would be incredibly annoying to have to manually start the VirtualCenter service each time your server boots. Luckily there is an easy fix — make the VirtualCenter service depend on the Microsoft SQL service. Microsoft has posted instructions for creating service dependencies on their site.
In short find the registry key: HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Services\vpxd and edit the DependsOnService property. Add two entries to this REG_SZ_MULTI value:
Save the changes. Now the next time the server boots the VirtualCenter service will not attempt to start until the Microsoft SQL service and SQL Server Agent service come online, sparing you of those annoying errors in the event log and having to restart the service manually.
Hope this helps!