You can configure a virtual machine that runs on an ESXi host to have up to 32 virtual CPUs. You can change the number of virtual CPUs while the virtual machine is running or powered off.

Virtual CPU hot add is supported for virtual machines with multicore CPU support and running on hardware version 8 or later. When the virtual machine is powered on, and CPU hot add is enabled, you can hot add virtual CPUs to the running virtual machine. You can only add multiples of the number of cores per socket. For multicore CPUs, the host must have a license for vSphere Virtual Symmetric Multiprocessing (Virtual SMP).


When you configure your virtual machine for multicore virtual CPU settings, you must ensure that your configuration complies with the requirements of the guest operating system EULA.

If CPU hot add is not enabled, power off the virtual machine before adding CPUs.

If CPU hot remove is not enabled, power off the virtual machine before removing CPUs.

To hot add multicore CPUs, verify that the virtual machine has hardware version 8.

Required privilege: Virtual Machine.Configuration.Change CPU Count on the virtual machine


Select a virtual machine.

In the virtual machines and templates inventory tree, select a group of virtual machines and select a virtual machine from the list on the right.

Search for a virtual machine and select it from the search results list.


In the VM Hardware panel, click Edit Settings.


Click Virtual Hardware.


Expand the CPU options, and select the number of cores for the virtual machine from the Cores drop-down menu.


Select the number of cores per socket from the Cores Per Socket drop-down menu.


Click OK.