Although you perform most ESX configuration activities through the vSphere Client, you use the service console command-line interface when you configure certain security features. Using the command-line interface requires that you log in to the host.


Log in to the ESX host using one of the following methods.

If you have direct access to the host, press Alt+F2 to open the login page on the machine's physical console.

If you are connecting to the host remotely, use SSH or another remote console connection to start a session on the host.


Enter a user name and password recognized by the ESX host.

If you are performing activities that require root privileges, log in to the service console as a recognized user and acquire root privileges through the sudo command, which provides enhanced security compared to the su command.

In addition to ESX-specific commands, you can use the service console command-line interface to run many Linux and UNIX commands. For more information about service console commands, use the man command_name command to check for man pages.