VMware ESXi: A (incomplete) list of host commands Part 1


here is a list of some cli’s  to control a VMware ESXi host from the command line. Enable the ESXi shell and login to console or connect with a ssh client remotely.
Restart Management, HA Services
/sbin/services restart

Installing Software. List/Install/Uninstall  VIBs (vSphere Installation bundle)

List vibs

esxcli software vib list

Install a vib

esxcli software vib install -v file:/tmp/[NewVIB].vib

Uninstall a vib (determine the Name of the VIB by the list command)

esxcli software vib remove -n VIBname

Install a patch

esxcli software vib install /tmp/[patchName].zip


firewall state

esxcli network firewall get

Firewall rules

esxcli network firewall ruleset list

Firewall activate a Ruleset, i.e. sshClient

esxcli network firewall ruleset set --ruleset-id=sshClient --enabled=true

Only allow an IP Range for the ssh daemon

esxcli network firewall ruleset allowedip add --ruleset-id sshServer --ip-address

List Kernel Network Interfaces

esxcli network ip interface list

List physical Network Interfaces
esxcli network nic list

Shutdown physical network interface
esxcli network nic down -n vmnic4

List routing table

esxcli network ip route ipv4 list

Add a route

esxcli network ip route ipv4 add --gateway --network

To make the route persistent add the command line to a ESXi startup script. In ESXi 5.1


in ESXi <=5.0


List arp cache
esxcli network ip neighbor list

Remove arp cache entry
esxcli network ip neighbor remove -a -v 4


Set Community (Communityname: MGMCOM)

esxcli system snmp set --communities MGMCOM

Set Trap destintion (IP Address Management station:

esxcli system snmp set --targets

Send test trap

esxcli system snmp test


esxcli system snmp get

enable IPMI as SNMP source

esxcli system snmp set --hwsrc sensors

enable CIM as SNMP source

esxcli system snmp set --hwsrc indications

Enable snmp

esxcli system snmp set --enable true

Virtual disks

extend a virtual disk, i.e. to 40GB

vmkfstools -X 40G /vmfs/volumes/datastore1/Test/test.vmdk

Convert a Workstation based virtual Disk to a VMFS Disk for use at ESXi. Disk to convert: Computer.vmdk
Rename Disk Computer.vmdk to Computer_WS.vmdk
mv Computer.vmdk Computer_WS.vmdk
Clone the disk
vmkfstools -i Computer_WS.vmdk -d zeroedthick Computer.vmdk
Destination disk format: VMFS thin-provisioned
Cloning disk 'Computer.vmdk'...
Clone: 100% done.

Remove Workstation disk

rm Computer_WS.vmdk

Note: if you have manually copied the virtual machine from a Workstation to the ESXi, remove the  Computer.vmx.lck folder. Otherwise the virtual machine could not be altered. The prefered way to bring your workstation based virtual machine to an ESXi host is to you the vmware converter or use the VMware Workstation Upload function.

To be continued….in Part 2


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