You can add hosts under a data center object, folder object, or cluster object. If a host contains virtual machines, those virtual machines are added to the inventory together with the host.

You can also add hosts to a DRS cluster, for details see vSphere Resource Management.


  • Verify that a data center, folder, or cluster exists in the inventory.

  • Obtain the user name and password of the root user account for the host.

  • Verify that hosts behind a firewall are able to communicate with the vCenter Server system and all other hosts through port 902 or other custom-configured port.

  • Verify that all NFS mounts on the host are active.

  • If you want to add a host with more than 512 LUNs and 2,048 paths to the vCenter Server inventory, verify that the vCenter Server instance is suitable for a large or x-large environment.

Required privileges:

  • Host > Inventory > Add host to cluster

  • Resource > Assign virtual machine to resource pool

  • System > View on the virtual machines folder where you want to place the virtual machines of the host.


  1. In the vSphere Web Client, navigate to a data center, cluster, or folder within a data center.
  2. Right-click the data center, cluster, or folder and select Add Host.
  3. Type the IP address or the name of the host and click Next.
  4. Type administrator credentials and click Next.
  5. Review the host summary and click Next.
  6. License the host through one of the following methods.
    • Assign an already existing license.

    • Assign a new license.

      1. Click Create New Licenses. The Add Host wizard minimizes in Work in Progress and the New Licenses wizard appears.

      2. Type of copy and paste the new license key from My VMware and click Next.

      3. Enter a new name for the license and click Next.

      4. Review the new license and click Finish.

  7. In the Add Host wizard click Next.
  8. (Optional) Select a lockdown mode option to disable the remote access for the administrator account after vCenter Server takes control of this host.
  9. (Optional) If you add the host to a data center or a folder, select a location for the virtual machines that reside on the host and click Next.
  10. Review the summary and click Finish.


A new task for adding the host appears in the Recent Tasks pane. It might take a few minutes for the task to complete.