Is there a step by step on how to install on ESXi?
No, there isn’t, to my knowledge.
For a proven solution, if I were you, I would just start an Ubuntu server 16.04 VM, and follow these steps (possibly updating it to PHP 7.1):
Why anyone would even think to install SuiteCRM directly on an ESXi?
ESXi(HyperV etc) is a platform to create virtual environments for other operating systems, not to operate as a webserver.
Fortunatley I’m a VMware instructor. SuiteCRM runs jus fine as a VM on ESXi. The only thing to watch for is resource utilisation. The most common problem is putting a VM, in fact this applies to so many scenarios, in a disk subsystem that can’t deliver the throughput.
Mine works fine