You can use performance tuning tools in the guest operating system for software profiling. You can identify and improve processor performance problems. This capability is useful for software developers who optimize or debug software that runs in the virtual machine.

The following conditions apply:
  • If virtual CPU performance counters are enabled, you can migrate the virtual machine only to hosts that have compatible CPU performance counters.
  • If an ESXi host's BIOS uses a performance counter or if Fault Tolerance is enabled, some virtual performance counters might not be available for the virtual machine to use.
Note: If a virtual machine resides on an ESXi host in an EVC cluster, CPU counters are not supported for virtual machine creation or editing. You must deactivate CPU performance counters.
For a list of virtualized Model-Specific Registers (MSRs), see the VMware knowledge base article at


  • Verify that the virtual machine compatibility is ESXi 5.1 and later.
  • Verify that the virtual machine is turned off.
  • Verify that Intel Nehalem Generation (Xeon Core i7) or later processors or AMD Opteron Generation 3 ("Greyhound") or later processors are installed.
  • Verify that Intel VT-x or AMD-V is enabled in the BIOS so that hardware-assisted virtualization is possible.
  • Required Privileges: Virtual machine.Configuration.Change Settings is set on the vCenter Server system.


  1. Right-click a virtual machine in the inventory and select Edit Settings.
  2. On the Virtual Hardware tab, expand CPU and select the Enable virtualized CPU performance counters check-box.
  3. Click OK.