I'm just evaluating vMA 5.5 with my home-lab of a few free ESXi 5.5-servers and now after reading some documentations I was trying my first few commands in the vMA-machine.
So i registered my first ESXi-server with the vifp command, connected to it and then I just wanted to turn on my test-guest-vm:
vmware-cmd /vmfs/volumes/401176d6-90e595dc/test-debian/test-debian.vmx start
Operation cannot be performed:
Fault string: Current license or ESXi version prohibits execution of the requested operation.
Fault detail: RestrictedVersionFault
So WTF, you even cannot turn on/off a VM with command-line operations with the free version or am I doing it wrong???
Which license do you need for ESXi to use even the most itsy bitsy common features with vMA?
What is even possible with vMA 5.5 and the free ESXi, only read-only operations?
Have to ask here, because I didn't find anything on vMA with free ESXi license restrictions.
after investigating further and googling around I finally found it: http://www.virtuallyghetto.com/2011/06/dreaded-faultrestrictedversionsummary.html
So generally speaking, vMA is quite useless in combination with free ESXi-servers. Pretty disappointing and my "believe" in VMware is further fading.
I don't think this is anything new...as far as I remember the ESXi free version has been limited to read only remote access through API since it was released (3.x?). You can still enable ssh and run commands locally on the host...obviously this doesn't scale well which is how they get you to buy licenses.
It was new for me that they mangled the commandline features so badly for ESXi free versions. A few years back I already used some commandline features and as far as I remember starting/stopping/etc. worked. With 5.5 nice features where added and I wanted to have a look at them.
So I have to work around with ssh.
I shouldn't wonder if VMware even makes SSH/NTP/NFS.... licensed features soon.