By default, a user who has the vCenter Server Administrator role can interact with files and applications within a virtual machine's guest operating system. To reduce the risk of breaching guest confidentiality, availability, or integrity, create a nonguest access role without the Guest Operations privilege. Assign that role to administrators who do not need virtual machine file access.

For security, be as restrictive about allowing access to the virtual data center as you are to the physical data center. Apply a custom role that disables guest access to users who require administrator privileges, but who are not authorized to interact with guest operating system files and applications.

For example, a configuration might include a virtual machine on the infrastructure that has sensitive information on it.

If tasks such as migration with vMotion require that data center administrators can access the virtual machine, disable some remote guest OS operations to ensure that those administrators cannot access sensitive information.


Verify that you have Administrator privileges on the vCenter Server system where you create the role.


  1. Log in to the vSphere Client as a user who has Administrator privileges on the vCenter Server system where you want to create the role.
  2. Select Administration and click Roles.
  3. Click the Administrator role and click the Clone role action icon.
  4. Enter a role name and description and click OK.
    For example, type Administrator No Guest Access.
  5. Select the cloned role and click the Edit role action icon.
  6. Under the Virtual machine privilege, deselect Guests operations and click Next.
  7. Click Finish.

What to do next

Select the vCenter Server system or the host and assign a permission that pairs the user or group that should have the new privileges to the newly created role. Remove those users from the Administrator role.