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


  • Verify that a data center or a folder 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 another custom-configured port.
  • Verify that all NFS mounts on the host are active.
  • Verify that you have the proper privileges. Different sets of privileges apply when you add multiple hosts to a cluster and a single host to a cluster or a data center. For more information, see Required Privileges for Common Tasks in the vSphere Security documentation.
  • 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 an x-large environment.


  1. In the vSphere Client, navigate to a data center or folder within a data center.
  2. Right-click the data center or folder and select Add Host.
  3. Enter the IP address or the name of the host and click Next.
  4. Enter 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. Enter or copy and paste the new license key from Customer Connect 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 deactivate the remote access for the administrator account after vCenter Server takes control of this host and click Next.
  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.