VMWare has a nasty bug in its web based license creation tool. I once supplied my name for the registration and as usually I wrote an Umlaut in my first name. And – as I already suspected earlier (when I investigated the license file’s content) – the little character (ü) and a wrong encoding left me with a corrupted license file and a non-functional ESX server.
Well, now we received a temporary license from VMWare support, which works. Hope they fix this bug soon (but hey, there’s just a quick workaround for me: Change the Umlaut in the database to an ‘ue’ to let me create a working license file).
And if somebody wonders, no, it was impossible to change my first name in order to remove the Umlaut. Though it’s perfectly possible to change the name of the account data, but the license file still has the Umlaut. But that’s a different bug. Besides that you can’t fix the license file as it is cryptographically signed.
Update 2009/7/22: They say it’s fixed now.