1. Make your Template VM
  2. Copy on Filesystem
Thats the way to-go with ESXi
Copy it

Enter a new directory name .. and wait until its ready..
As you can see, my template name was not the best idea tomdg01 😉

Register the VM

Now Change the Name in ESXi

here from tomdg01 VM-Name to tomdg02

Now you can Start the VM – ESXi will ask you – is this a copy- please say yes here.

With your favourit tool to connect , start ssh too your Template VM IP
Now change the IP+Hostname:

vi /etc/hostname – rename host
vi /etc/hosts – change ip
vi /etc/sysconfig/network-scripts/ifcfg-* – change ip

Restart and be Happy