vSphere Client doesn’t install properly using Windows 8. Just disappears after accepting the license agreement. Workaround below.
1. Download and install 7-zip. http://www.7-zip.org/
2. Taking the vSphere Client installer “VMware-viclient-all-5.1.0-1064113.exe”, extract all its files.
3. Run the redist\dotnet\dotnetfx35.exe binary within it. Accept its request to download dot net when prompted.
4. Reboot when prompted.
5. Right click the bin\VMware-viclient.exe binary extracted from the installer earlier, and set it to run in Windows XP SP3 compatibility mode.
6. Run it, should now install fine.
7. Run vSphere client, point it at the ESXi 5.1 instance installed earlier. Pop a “-u root -p mypassword” on the shortcut’s properties if you don’t want to re-type the username + password each time.
8. Ignore any certificate warnings.