vSphere client connect to ESXi host behind firewall with ssh tunnels

                                firewall
                                    | 
                                    |
  +-------+         +-------------+ |     +--------+
  |  ESXi |---------|  ssh server |-|-----| client |  
  +-------+         +-------------+ |     +--------+
                                    |
                                    |

Tunnel localhost ports 443,902 and 903 through the ssh server to the ESXi host in putty or mobaxterm or whatever:

ssh -L443:esxi:443 me@sshserver
ssh -L902:esxi:902 me@sshserver
ssh -L903:esxi:903 me@sshserver

Just trying to connect to localhost in the client doesn’t work. Not entirely sure why. If you add an entry to the hosts file like:

127.0.0.1 esxi esxi.wherever.com

Then you should be able to use the client to connect to ‘esxi’

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