Licencing help please

So I have to re-licence a couple of clusters used for our learning lab running vSphere 6 and I’ve been given a number of serial keys from licences bought by that department.

Each cluster contains 3 hosts, 5 CPUs, totalling 160 cores.

I read the VMware update FAQ from earlier this year – “One CPU license covers up to 32 cores in a single CPU”

When I add each licence it reports that they have an 8 CPU capacity.

Is that 32 x 8 then?

Wish they would list the capacity in core count if so.


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  1. It’s been a minute since I looked at this in depth but the licensing CPU should be per socket. So you have 8 socket licenses with what you described.

  2. Don’t let those 32 cores throw you off. Some of the newer processors can have up to 48 cores, so VMware changed their licensing so if you have those top of the line processors, you have to pay for more than one license since you wouldn’t need as many sockets. For most cases, it’s just one license per socket.

  3. Licensing always changes after each release, you dont specify what kind of licenses you have, for what version of ESX. Without that its impossible to tell.

    Wouldn’t it just be easier to ask whoever bought the licenses about that they bought?

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