You can use the Move VM action to move virtual machines from one host and datastore to another host and datastore to balance the workload in your environment.

How the Action Works

When you initiate this action, the Move VM wizard opens and scopes the possible destinations. You select the destination host and datastore from the list of available destinations.

To see all destinations, you must have view access to the following object types:

  • Scope object, which includes a vCenter Server, data center, custom data center, or cluster.
  • Host in the scope object.
  • Datastore in the host.

The destinations include combinations of objects for the move, such as a specific host and datastore, or a different host with the same datastore. You select one of the available combinations. If your environment includes many destination objects, such as many hosts or datastores, enter text in the filter text box to search for specific destination objects.

The All Filters option helps you to move the VM according to the following action option:
  • Destination Host
  • Destination Datastore
  • Will it Fit
  • VM PowerOff Required
  • Affinity Rules

VMware Aria Operations uses vSphere DRS rules that you define in vCenter Server to help determine good placement decisions for your virtual machines in the move action. The Affinity Rules column indicates whether those rules are violated by the Move VM action.

Important: Do not attempt to move virtual machines that are members of a vApp, because the vApp can become nonfunctional. Instead, add affinity rules for these virtual machines to keep them together so that the Move VM and Rebalance Container actions will ignore them.

To initiate the action, you click the Begin Action button.

When you finish the wizard, VMware Aria Operations displays a dialog box to indicate that the action has started. To track the status of the action, click the link in the dialog box and view the state of the action in Administration > Recent Tasks.

Moving Virtual Machines is Not Allowed Across Data Centers

When you attempt to use the Move VM action to move a virtual machine across data centers, VMware Aria Operations must be able to identify the matching network and storage objects for the destination data center. Network objects include VMware virtual switches and distributed virtual switches. Storage objects include datastores and datastore clusters.

Moving a virtual machine across data centers requires VMware Aria Operations to move the virtual machine files and change the virtual machine network configuration. VMware Aria Operations does not currently move the virtual machine files across datastores, nor does it change the virtual machine network configuration. As a result, VMware Aria Operations does not allow you to move virtual machines across data centers.

When you use the Move VM action, be aware of the following behavior:

  • If you select a single virtual machine, VMware Aria Operations displays the data center where the virtual machine resides.
  • If you select multiple virtual machines, but those virtual machines do not share a common data center, the Move VM action does not display the data centers, and the Move VM action does not appear in the actions menu.

Where You Run the Action

For the supported objects and object levels, this action is available in the following locations in VMware Aria Operations:
  • Embedded just below the top menu.
  • On the toolbar when you click Environment in the menu, select an object, click the Details tab and click Views.
  • On the toolbar when you click Environment in the menu, select an object, click the Environment tab, and select an object in the list view.
  • In the Inventory list when you click Administration in the menu, click Inventory, then click the List tab, and select an object in the list.
  • In configured alert recommendations.
  • In the Object List and Topology Graph dashboard widgets.

Action Options

Review the following information about the virtual machines to ensure that you are submitting the action for the correct objects.

Option Description


Indicates the priority of the proposed move destination. When the action is automated, the proposed destination with priority of 1 is automatically selected.

Destination Host

Name of the host to which the virtual machine will be moved.

Current CPU Workload

Amount of CPU in GHz available on the host.

Current Memory Workload

Amount of memory in GB available on the host.

Destination Datastore

Datastore to which the virtual machines storage will be moved.

Current Disk Space Workload

Amount of disk space available on the datastore.

Will it fit

Calculated estimation of whether the virtual machine fits on the selected destination.

VM Power Off Required

When set to No, the action does not power off the virtual machine before the move. When set to Yes, the action powers off the virtual machine before the move takes place, and powers on the virtual machine after the move is complete. If VMware Tools is installed, a guest OS shutdown is used to power off the virtual machine.

Affinity Rules

Indicates whether vSphere DRS rules exist, as defined in vCenter Server. For example, a rule might exist to keep virtual machines together, and another rule might exist to separate virtual machines.

This column indicates the following status.

  • Empty. vSphere DRS rules are not defined.
  • Green check mark. The move of virtual machines does not violate affinity rules.
  • Red circle with bar. The move of virtual machines does break affinity rules. If you choose to break the affinity rules, you must resolve any problems manually.

Affinity Rule Details

Identifies the virtual machine and the vSphere DRS rule name as defined in vCenter Server.

After you click OK, the next dialog box provides the task ID and a link to the task list.

Table 1. Task ID Dialog Box
Option Description
Recent Tasks To view the status of the job and verify that the job finished, click Recent Tasks.
OK To close the dialog box without further action, click OK.