We have a production cluster with 4 hosts in a cluster. All the Virtual Center Agent for ESX licenses are used. We want to add two new hosts, decommission 2 of the old hosts and use the licenses for the new ones. For this we installed ESX 3.5 in evaluation mode on 2 servers. When we tryed to add those host to the Virtual Center cluster we get the message "There are not enough licenses installed to perform the operation". I tried again deselecting the check box for "Change host license server settings to match VirtualCenter's setting when they are added to inventory" but I get the same message. We don't want to decommission the existing hosts to free the licenses without testing the new ones.
Is any way we can add the host without buying new licenses ?
Since you've got the 4 ESX Servers in a CLuster you should be able to do VMotion. Set one of your old ESX-Servers you plan to retire in Maintenance Mode that should evacuate the VM's on that host to the other 3 remaining ESX-Servers. When the ESX-Server ist empty (all VM's are moved) take it out of the Cluster and Virtual Center. Now you have one free License and you can add your new ESX-Server to Virtual Center and the Cluster.
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either Vmotion the VMs off one host and onto the remaining 3, then remove the old host and add the new one.
If you can not do this and have already configured the new ESX, you could shut down the VMs, and then import them onto the new ESX (make sure you select keep settings when prompted at the start),
start them on the new host and shut down / remove the old host . . . then add the new host to the cluster.
Will your new Hosts accept Vmotion from the old hosts (I mean is the hardwrae supported) - if not, consider enabling EVC (as it sounds liek you are upgrading all your hosts) - bear in mind, this does require the VMs to be shut down . .