vCenter Server License Inventory

All license keys of ESXi hosts, vCenter Server and solutions are kept in the vCenter Server license inventory. vCenter Server systems in Linked Mode share a common license inventory. When you add a license key in linked mode, the key becomes available to all the vCenter Server systems within the same Linked Mode group. As the license keys are shared, and each system in the group has the same inventory view, although this might not always seem so because of replication delays.

Below examples are specific to ESXi hosts and might not apply to solutions.

Example: Uninstallation Scenarios

You uninstall vCenter Server without first unlicensing and removing the hosts.

1. The hosts remain licensed.

2. You add the licensed hosts to another vCenter Server instance.

3. The license keys are transferred with the hosts.

A slightly different scenario:

You uninstall vCenter Server keeping all hosts licensed.

1. You reinstall vCenter Server and make it part of a different Linked Mode group.

2. The host license keys from the previous group are not transferred to the new group.

3. You add hosts that were licensed by the previous vCenter Server group to the new group.

4. The host license keys are transferred to the new group.

5. The host license keys now belong to two Linked Mode groups. If the total assignment of the key exceeds the key’s capacity, this scenario is not supported and causes your license usage to be out of compliance.

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