After you add license keys to the license inventory of vCenter Server, you can assign the keys to unlicensed assets, assets with expiring licenses, or assets with expiring evaluation periods. Assets are vCenter Server systems, ESXi hosts, clusters with enabled Virtual SAN, and solutions.


If an ESXi host disconnects from vCenter Server immediately after you assign a license key, the license assignment is not completed but the host appears as licensed. The host is licensed after it reconnects to vCenter Server.


  • Required privilege: Global > Licenses

  • Verify that the license keys that you want to assign are available in the inventory of the vCenter Server system.


  1. In the vSphere Web Client, select Administration, and under Licensing, select Licenses.
  2. From the vCenter Server drop-down menu, select the vCenter Server system that is associated with the assets that you want to license.

    For example, if you want to license hosts, select the vCenter Server system that manages the hosts.

  3. Use Shift+click to select the assets that you want to license.
  4. Click Assign License Key.
  5. Select the license key that you want to assign and click OK.

    Make sure that you select a license key that supports all the features that the assets are running.


The license key is assigned to the assets. Capacity from the license key is allocated according to the license usage of the assets.