How to License a ESXi 6X / 70 and vCenter Server 6x /7.0x

https://kb.vmware.com/s/article/2107538

 

 

Note: To perform these steps, your vSphere Web Client needs to be connected to the vCenter Server.
Older versions of vCenter Server cannot manage newer versions of ESXi. The vCenter Server is not forward compatible. For example, ESXi 7.0 cannot be managed by vCenter Server 6.5 or 6.7 versions. 
 

Add/Replace/Remove license
 

To add a license in vCenter Server without assigning it to a Product follow steps 1-8 in Option 2.

Option 1

1.      Connect to the vCenter Web Console as administrator.

2.      Click Hosts and Clusters.

3.      Right click on the system (vCenter/vSphere ESXi – Host) you want to license to.

4.      Select Assign license.

If the license is not in the vCenter Server:

5.      Click NEW LICENSE Tab.

6.      Enter the License key.

7.      Enter the License name.

8.      Click Next.

9.      Edit the name of the license, then click OK.

The Host/vCenter is now licensed.

Option 2

1.      Connect to the vCenter Web Console as administrator.

2.      Click Menu > Home.

3.      Click Administration.

4.      Select Licenses in the left column, then select Licenses Tab.

5.      Click Add New Licenses.

6.      Enter the license keys.

7.      Click Next.

8.      Edit license names, then click Next.

9.      Click Finish.

The license is now added.

To assign the license to a vCenter.

10.   Select the Asset tab.

11.   Select vCenter Server Systems tab.

12.   Select the vCenter you want to license.

13.   Click Assign License.

14.   Select the license you want to use.

15.   Click OK.

The vCenter is now licensed.
 

To assign a license to an ESXi-Host/vSphere

10.   Select the Assets tab.

11.   Select HOST tab.

12.   Select the Host you want to license.

13.   Click Assign licenses.

14.   Select the license you want to use.

15.   Click OK.

The ESXi is now licensed

Remove a License Key

Before you can remove a license key, you need to make sure that no hosts or vCenter Servers are assigned to the license. To do so, follow the steps in Option 1 to assign each asset to a different license key.
To check if the license is not assigned anymore, you can verify the usage count is zero on the vCenter Server. Steps 1-4 Option 2.

If the key is not assigned to any solution or system.

1.      Click Menu > Home.

2.      Select Administration.

3.      Select Licenses in the left column.

4.      Select the licenses you want to remove.

5.      Click Remove Licenses.

6.      Select Yes to remove the selected license.

The license is now removed.
 

In Evaluation Mode, you can access and use all features of ESXi. The evaluation period is 60 days and begins as soon as you power on the ESXi hosts. To make full use of the evaluation period, make an early decision to use Evaluation Mode. If you do not enter a vSphere license key during installation, ESXi is installed in Evaluation Mode.

Once the Evaluation Mode period expires, product capabilities are disabled until a new license key is assigned to the installation. There will be no loss of data in this scenario.

Notes:

·        Select the Evaluation Mode license option to enable Evaluation Mode. You do not need a license key to enable vSphere Evaluation Mode.

·        For ESXi hosts, license or evaluation period expiry leads to disconnection from vCenter Server. All Powered On virtual machines continue to work, but you cannot Power On virtual machines after they are powered off.

·        You cannot change the current configuration of the features that are in use. You cannot use the features that remained unused while the host is in Evaluation Mode. For a more complete explanation of Evaluation Mode, see Licensing for ESXi Hosts.

·        When the license or evaluation period of a vCenter Server system expires, all hosts disconnect from that vCenter Server system. For a more complete explanation of Evaluation Mode, see Licensing for vCenter Server.

 Related Information

·        VMware Skyline Health Diagnostics for vSphere – FAQ

·        How to upgrade license keys in My VMware

·        Licensing ESXi 5.x and vCenter Server 5.x

·        Failed to power on virtual machine

·        vCenter Server 6.x incorrectly displays the amount of licenses in use by ESXi hosts


Note:

·        If after following the steps in the KB article, you find that the vCenter incorrectly displays the number of licenses in use by ESXi hosts. There may be an issue due to a stale license entry in the VMware Directory Services database:


Symptoms:

·        vCenter Server shows the license assigned key count as negative

·        You are unable to assign more hosts to a license key

·        The number of hosts in the environment is lower than the capacity of the license


Resolution:

·        This issue can occur due to a stale license entry in the VMware Directory Services database.


How to identify and remove stale license entries:

·        vCenter Server 6.x incorrectly displays the amount of licenses in use by ESXi hosts (2115869)

 

 

 

 

Regards,

 

Kon Belieu

Partner

Kon@cxit.com   |  513-575-3500


4440 Lake Forest Dr., Suite 102B, Cincinnati, OH  45242

 

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