The top VMware ESX commands and ESXi commands
These VMware ESX and ESXi commands can be run with the ESX service console
(locally or remotely using Secure Shell) or with RCLI (in VMware Infrastructure
3) and vSphere CLI (in vSphere). With the RCLI and vSphere CLI, note that many
of the commands have been renamed to vicfg- instead of esxcfg- (i.e.,
esxcfg-nics.pl and vicfg-nics.pl). Both commands perform the same function, but
VMware is trying to migrate from esxcfg- to vicfg-.
- The versatile vmkfstools
command is the Swiss army knife of virtual disks and can be used to copy,
convert, rename, import, export and resize virtual disk files.
troubleshoots performance problems. It provides real-time and historical
performance statistics for CPU, memory, disk and network usage.
views and configures physical network interface cards (NICs). It displays
NIC status and can configure speed and duplex of the NICs.
views and configures virtual switches. It's useful for configuring
networking when the vSphere Client cannot be used. The command configures
port groups and links physical NICs to them (known as uplinks) anad
configures virtual LAN IDs, Cisco Discovery Protocol (CDP) and the MTU of
- Esxcfg-vswif and esxcfg-vmknic
allow you to view and configure special port groups on vSwitches.
Esxcfg-vswif configures the ESX service console network interfaces,
which are also known as vswif ports. Esxcfg-vmknic configures
VMkernel network interfaces, which are necessary for VMotion and connecting
to iSCSI and Network File System network storage devices.
is a versatile command to manage and retrieve information from virtual
machines. It can change VM power states, manage snapshots, register and
unregister VMs, and retrieve and set various VM information.
- Vimsh and vmware-vim-cmd
are complex commands that you should fully
understand before using.
Vimsh is a powerful interactive shell that allows execution of commands
and the ability to display and configure many things. VMware-vim-cmd
is a front end of sorts for vimsh that simplifies command usage without
having to know the many switches that vimsh requires.
- Vihostupdate and esxupdate
update and patch ESX and ESXi hosts. Esxupdate is used on the ESX
service console and vihostupdate is used by the RCLI/vSphere CLI. In
addition, vihostupdate35 is used to patch ESX and ESXi version 3.5
is an RCLI/vSphere CLI command used to initiate Storage VMotion sessions to
relocate a VM's virtual disk to another datastore while it is running. In
ESX 3.5 this command was the only method to initiate a SVMotion; in vSphere
the ability to do this was added to the vSphere Client GUI.
displays and sets all paths from a host to its storage devices.
lets a host res-can a particular storage adapter to discover new storage
devices. This tools is useful when storage devices have been added, removed
or changed from a storage network.
- Esxcfg-scsidevs and
esxcfg-vmhbadevs display information on the
storage devices connected to a host. Esxcfg-vmhbadevs was used in ESX
3.5 and was replaced by esxcfg-scsidevs in vSphere.
displays information and configures the built-in firewall that protects the
ESX service console. It allows and blocks specific TCP/IP ports between the
service console and other network devices.
- The esxcfg-info command
provides a wealth of information about the host that it is run on. It can be
re-directed to a text file to document host configuration.
configures Service Console authentication on an ESX host. It can configure
authentication to a third-party LDAP or Active Directory server and set
various local security options.
is a powerful information gathering tool commonly used in troubleshooting.
The command gathers up a large amount of configuration info, log files and
the output from many commands into a single .tgz archive file. It can also
be used to display VM information as well as kill VMs that are not