These topics provide guidelines for troubleshooting your license setup for environments with only ESX 4.1/ESXi 4.1 hosts and environments that have a mixture of ESX 4.1/ESXi 4.1 and legacy ESX 3.x/ESXi 3.5 hosts.

If you cannot resolve the problem, contact VMware for support as follows:

If you have difficulties in configuring licensed features, file a support request at

To license vCenter Server, you must apply a vCenter Server license key.

To license ESX/ESXi, you must apply a vSphere license key.

If you downgrade your license from evaluation mode to a license that does not support the features that you configured while using evaluation mode, the features might stop working without warning.

If a licensing-related error message appears when you try to configure a feature, check the licensed features on the host and on the vCenter Server system to make sure that the host or vCenter Server system is licensed to use the feature that you are trying to configure.

If all the hosts in a vCenter Server system inventory become disconnected, this might be because the vCenter Server license is expired or the 60-day evaluation period has expired.

If you cannot power on the virtual machines that reside on a host, this might be because the host license is expired or the 60-day evaluation period is expired.

If an ESX/ESXi host is managed by a vCenter Server system, changes made to the host license via direct connection to the host do not persist, because the changes are overwritten by the license key assigned via vCenter Server. See About Overriding the Host License Configuration.

If vCenter Server is managing ESX 3.x/ESXi 3.5 hosts, vCenter Server must check out vCenter Server Agent licenses from a license server. If vCenter Server is having trouble communicating with your license server, do the following:

Check that the license server Microsoft Windows service is running.

Check that the license server is listening.

Check the license server status.

If your license server is operating properly, you might have a problem with your license file.

If your license server is working correctly and your license file is correct, check that you correctly configured centralized or single-host licensing, as appropriate to your environment.

For detailed troubleshooting and configuration instructions, see the licensing documentation in the Installation Guide or the Setup Guide for VMware Infrastructure 3.