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Free version of VMware ESXi


sanches.romero
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Hi, @sanches.romero!

The free version works on a standalone ESXi host. However, there are a lot of limitations you should consider:

1. There isn't any official support. If you have any troubles, you can consult with the VMware community. However, there is no guarantee someone will solve your problem. 
2. If you have a VM with more than eight virtual processors, the VM will most likely fail as the maximum of the vCPU for each VM is eight. 
3. One of the most significant disadvantages is that you can't add the free ESXi host to vCenter. That's why you won't be able to migrate machines or use clustering features. 
4. There is no vStorage API available. vStorage Application Program Interface (API) is a data protection framework for centralized backup of VMs on a host level. It makes VM backup efficient, offloading CPU, storage and network. 

Check more information about the free version of VMware ESXi in the NAKIVO blog  https://www.nakivo.com/blog/free-vmware-esxi-restrictions-limitations/ 
 

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@sanches.romero,

Yes, you're right. During the free trial, you get all the features of the most advanced editions (vSphere Enterprise Plus and vCenter Server Standard). The trial license has a duration of 60 days. Note: you can use these 60 days when needed. Let's say you start using vCenter in the trial version for 30 days, and only after the evaluation month you buy the license. It means you will have 30 days remaining to go from the licensed to the evaluation mode. You can switch back to the evaluation mode any time you want.

At the same time, if your trial period expires and you have no license assigned, all the hosts will be disconnected from the vCenter. If you buy a license afterward, the ESXi hosts you added before will be reconnected automatically.

There is a comprehensive guide on the VMware licensing options, in case you are confused. https://www.nakivo.com/blog/vmware-vcenter-server-licensing-options/Official 

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