New 1-year-duration VMware vSphere 7 license keys are now available to 2021's vExperts

Posted by Paul Braren on Mar 3 2021 (updated on Apr 12 2021) in
  • ESXi
  • HowTo
  • HomeLab
  • Virtualization
  • VMUGAdvantage
  • vSphere7
  • vExpert-files-most-people-will-want

    Like many home lab enthusiasts, I was getting a little nervous about the impending expiration of my vExpert license keys, it's been nagging me for weeks now. Today I happened to spot that a bunch of license keys have been apparently just been added, notice the dates below the new "Date Added" column seen in the screenshot at right.

    Getting your keys downloaded from the web portal and applied to your vSphere home lab using the vSphere Client is pretty straightforward, instructions and video below. Who doesn't want happy green checkboxes instead of an ugly but effective orange ribbon?

    Step-by-step instructions

    1. Login to
    2. Chuckle when you spot the vExpert download site's fun text seen at bottom-right:
      "© 2021 VMware, Inc. Fueled by stroopwafels."
    3. Locate the 2 files that most home lab enthusiasts are after:
      • for VCSA 7.x, download
        2021 vCenter Server 7 Standard
        License Key and add it to your licenses in vSphere Client
      • For ESX 7.x, copy the
        2021 vSphere 7 ENT Plus
        License Key and add it to your licenses in vSphere Client
    4. Apply the VCSA license key to your vCenter (right-click, "Assign License...")
    5. Apply the ESXi license key to your ESXi host(s) (right click, "Assign License...")
    6. Refresh your vSphere Client browser page (F5), the orange
      There are expired or expiring licenses in your inventory. MANAGE YOUR LICENSES" ribbon should vanish
    7. Feel good inside, then tweet this article to your friends, then sleep like a baby tonight and every night until March 30 2022 gets close, then
    8. Rinse and repeat in perpetuity, before the end of every March


    While the instructions below were intended for VMUG Advantage members, the process is essentially identical for vExpert members too. If you'd prefer, you can jump to the license key application process starting at 1 minute 42 seconds here.

    Paul Braren - May 06 2020 - How to apply your VMUG Advantage EVALExperience vSphere 7 license keys to your home lab

    Closing thoughts

    As of March 03 2021, here's the list of currently available license keys:

    • Fusion 12 PRO
    • Horizon 8 Advanced
    • Integrated Open Stack
    • NSX Data Center
    • SDDC Manager
    • SRM 8 ENT
    • Tanzu
    • ThinApp 5 Packager
    • vCenter Server 7 Standard
    • vCloud Director 10
    • vRealize Network Insight 6 ENT
    • vRealize Operations 6 Manager for Horizon
    • vRealize Suite 2019 ENT
    • VSAN 7 ENT
    • vSphere 7 ENT Plus
    • Workstation 16 PRO

    Added Mar 11 2021:

    • VMware Horizon Apps 8 Advanced (HZ8-AP-ADC-C)
    • vSphere 6 Enterprise (VS6-ENT-C)
    • HCX Enterprise (HCX-AD-NXEPL)
    • vRealize True Visibility Suite Enterprise (VR8-TVS-ENT-C)
    • NSX Advanced Load Balancer (NX-ALB-SC-1TLSS-C)
    • vRealize Network Insight 6 for SD-WAN (VRNI6-AD-VC)
    • Telco Cloud Automation (TEL-CLD-AUTO)

    Added Apr 8 2021:

    • VMware vSphere 6 Enterprise Plus
    • VMware vCenter Server 6 (Standard for vSphere 6)
    • VMware vCenter Server 6 Standard for Horizon
    • VMware Horizon 8 Enterprise

    Added Apr 12 2021:

    • VMware Cloud Director Availability version 4
    • VMware Virtual SAN 5.5

    It's a little odd there is no 2021 vCenter Server 7 Enterprise in there, so we're missing some abilities for now, perhaps the updates to the vExpert portal are still underway.

    See also at TinkerTry