vSphere 5 License Entitlement changes

Following my previous post VMware have just announced a change to the License entitlements to vSphere 5, I know I work for VMware and therefore my view is obviously slightly tainted but I personally think this is a good move and it proves that they do listen and value their customers opinions.

So what changes have been made ?

  1. VMware have increased vRAM entitlements for all vSphere editions.
  2. The amount of vRAM has been capped at 96GB of vRAM, so if your VMs have over this amount it will only count the first 96GB.
  3. The amount of vRAM is now calculated as a 12 month average of allocated vRAM

New Entitlements

The changes mean that the following vRAM entitlements per edition will now be granted:

vSphere edition vRAM entitlement
vSphere Enterprise Plus 96 GB
vSphere Enterprise 64 GB
vSphere Standard 32 GB
vSphere Essentials Plus 32 GB
vSphere Essentials 32 GB
Free vSphere Hypervisor 32 GB (Per Host)

I know for sure the people with home labs using the free version will certainly be happy about the change from 8 GB to 32 GB but remember this limit will only allow you to use 32 GB of physical memory, not the average usage like other license versions.

Also worth a mention is that Essentials and Essentials Plus have a hard enforcement. This is set at 6x32GB = 192GB, this will also be displayed in the report.

Just a reminder that also VMware View environments will not be subject to this licensing, for more information view the blog post here.


If you are over on the vRAM then don’t panic! There are things you can do which might mean things will still equal out with your current licenses.

You might want to think about the following steps:

  • Make sure all licenses are loaded into vCenter Server
  • Link vCenter Servers if one vCenter has excess vRAM entitlement
  • Turn off unused VMs
  • Rebalance licenses from undeployed vCenters to the current vCenter
  • Ensure the vRAM configured to VMs is appropriate (right sizing)
  • Rebalance VMs to use other hosts which have available vRAM from hosts with different editions of vSphere

License Validator 2.0

I have updated the License Validator script to include these new changes, the script will detail each license type and tell you how much vRAM you will be entitled to and how much you currently have allocated (note this is not an average of the last 12 months but will give you a good indication of your current ).

How to use the script

1. Install PowerCLI (If you need some instructions on this then please follow this great blog post)

2. Download the script from the bottom of this post

3. Watch the below video on how to run the script

Not included / Help

This script doesn’t account for linked mode, so make sure you use it against each vCenter and add the vRAM figures (Pooled vRAM Capacity and vRAM Used) together for each vSphere Edition to make sure you entitlements are correct.

This script requires vSphere 4.1 or higher.

This script requires Windows PowerShell V2 (http://support.microsoft.com/kb/968930)

I have added log file which will be created in the same folder as the html file, if you have any issues please email the log file and html result to contact(at)virtu-al.net for further help with the results.

How to run

Sample Output


License Validator Script



Alan Renouf has a role of Automation Frameworks Product Manager at VMware responsible for providing the architects and operators of the cloud infrastructure with the toolkits/frameworks and command-line interfaces they require to build a fully automated software-defined datacenter. Alan is a frequent blogger at http://blogs.vmware.com/vipowershell and has a personal blog at http://virtu-al.net. You can follow Alan on twitter as @alanrenouf.

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40 Responses

  1. Jay says:


    Just read other comments about VMware removing vRAM model

  2. Jay says:

    Hi Alan,

    I can not able to download the script. Error “File not found”

    Could you please let me know if any alternative location


  3. Barry Tapscott says:


    Are the script and sample output files still available? I get “File not found” for both.

    Thanks… Barry

  4. Steve Gold says:


    is the script still available, I am getting a file not found when I click on the download link.

  5. Joel says:

    I am having problems with the output. There are no longer any warnings displayed after unblocking the script and ignoring certificates. However the output html is empty and the log file only include All licence info, Host Info and Host Licenses. Any ideas?
    Running Esxi 5. PowerShell on Windows 7.

  6. Hitesh Dave says:

    Your script is too good. I have PowerCLI 5 and ran this script on from one of the VM and also from vCenter server 5. I have vSphere 5 ENT license. But the script did not generate any report.
    vCenter server is installed in Windows Server 2008 R2.

    Could you tell me what could be the problem.

  7. Wayne says:

    Thanks for the script!

    You state “This script requires vSphere 4.1 or higher.” but it did run and produced results in a v4.0 environment. Should I be concerned the numbers are inaccurate since it’s not v4.1?

    Also, is there a way to exclude a cluster? We have 3 clusters in our vCenter and I only want license info for 2 of them.

    Thank you

  8. xlntech says:

    It seems that this script only works properly if a v4 license is installed. Is there a way to figure out what my licensing requirements would be if I am using the free version and want to move to the full product?

  9. Ashok says:

    Excellent work !! Thanks a lot

  10. Sudhansu Pati says:

    I couldn’t download the script file because of “File Not Found” error. Is it possible to send it to me via an attachment.

  11. Craig says:

    Al, Thanks for the script, it is very nice and useful.

  12. Jeff says:

    Thanks Al. The script is very nice. I appreciate you taking the time to publish it for us.

  13. Jeff says:

    Attempted to download the License Advisor this morning. Getting “File Not Found” error.

    Just thought you might like to know.

  14. Micha says:


    There seems to be a Problem when enumerating the hosts. I changed the IP & Hostname of some hosts once, but now the LV tries to connect so the old IP/Hostname. Any Ideas?

    Kind Regards,


    • Virtu-Al says:

      Micha, If you take a look at the log file (or email it to me) chances are you will have the hosts still down as the original name as you added them to vCenter, this will cause the script an issue as it will try to get the VMs from these rather than the current name, other people have fixed this by removing the hosts and re-adding them, you could also try messing with them in the licensing tab, please do this in your maintenance hours just in case !

  15. Lane Leverett says:


    Thanks for the updated script! I was doing a presentation today to a group of customers on vSphere 5 and was able to show off your script and intelligently explain the licensing changes. Thanks for the tool in helping out VMware customers understand the impact of the new licensing on their own environments.


  16. Phil says:

    Bug alert!

    On lines 627 and 630, change $v5EntPlus.vRamGB to $vRAM



  17. Tom says:

    The validator script is a nice one 😀

    Maybe it could be possible to show the assigned VMs of the Advanced licenses in the License Information Breakdown for the Enterprise licenses..

    We have a lot Advanced licenses and in vSphere 5 they will be converted to Enterprise licenses.
    But the script output does only show Advanced licenses in vSphere 4 and in the License Information Breakdown there are no VM assigned to the Enterprise license.

    Just an ‘ER’ :)

    Would be great if it could be changed :)


  18. Derek says:

    This is certainly welcomed news, but it’s interesting when you compare the announced VMware cloud service provider model which is migrating off of allocated vRAM to a reserved vRAM model.


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