Did you know that you can connect the VMware Player client to a guest running on VMware ESX/ESXi?
This is handy, especially for Windows guests where you don't want to enable RDP or some other remote desktop service (VNC).
The guest will automatically start if it isn't already running. A drawback (or benefit depending on how you look at it), via VMware Player you don't have the ability to edit hardware configuration or manage snapshots. You'll still need to use the VIC for that.
I was running a Windows guest (via VMware Player) on my Fedora 10 desktop to have access to MS Office, support for corporate Windows only apps, and most importantly access to the Virtual Infrastructure Client. Even with a fairly speedy dual core workstation, the Windows guest consistently bogged down the workstation. So, I decided, why not run this thing on the server and let it handle the load?
I used VMware Converter (free) to convert the VMware Player guest to a Virtual Infrastructure guest and sent it to the datastore on the ESXi server. I didn't realize that VMware Converter could transfer the converted guest on the fly to the ESXi server without purchasing extra licenses, well, it can and does.
Once the guest completed conversion and transfer to the ESXi server, i created a desktop launcher for VMware Player to launch the guest directly. The command line is as follows:
/usr/bin/vmplayer -h 10.1.1.2 -u "flakrat" "[datastore1] winxp01/winxp01.vmx"
Unfortunately, I don't see any method of adding VI guests to the list of "Recent Virtual Machines" in VMware Player client. Thus the custom desktop launcher.