vCenter Server 5.x fails to start with the error: Failed to add LDAP entry
search cancel

vCenter Server 5.x fails to start with the error: Failed to add LDAP entry


Article ID: 344673


Updated On:


VMware vCenter Server


  • vCenter Server 5.x fails to start.
  • In the C:\ProgramData\VMware\VMware VirtualCenter\Logs\vpxd.log log file, you see enteries similar to:

    • error 'win32vpxLdap_win32'] [LDAP Client] Failed to add LDAP entry cn=d6cc6fd2-bb66-4fe9-9892-4a3a0c93b91d,ou=Instances,dc=virtualcenter,dc=vmware,dc=int: 0×68 (The object already exists.)
    • error 'win32vpxLdap_win32'] [LDAP Client] Failed to add LDAP entry cn=XXXXX-XXXXX-XXXXX-XXXXX-XXXXX,ou=Licenses,ou=Licensing,dc=virtualcenter,dc=vmware,dc=int: 0x68 (The object already exists.)

      Note: The CN value referenced in the vpxd log is unique to your vCenter Server installation.

Note: The preceding log excerpts are only examples. Date, time, and environmental variables may vary depending on your environment.  


VMware vCenter Server 5.5.x
VMware vCenter Server 5.0.x
VMware vCenter Server Appliance 5.1.x
VMware vCenter Server Appliance 5.5.x
VMware vCenter Server 5.1.x
VMware vCenter Server Appliance 5.0.x


This issue may occur for one of these reasons:
  • The World Wide Web Publishing service is running.
  • A stale entry within the vCenter Server ADAM database.


To resolve this issue, use one of the option based on your symptom:
  • Stop the World Wide Web publishing service or uninstall IIS from the vCenter Server.
  • Delete the stale ADAM database entry.
To delete the stale ADAM database entry:

  1. On vCenter Server, navigate to Start > Administrative Tools > ADSI Edit. The ADAM editor appears.
  2. Right-click ADSI Edit at the root level and click Connect to. The Connection Settings window appears.
  3. For Connection Point, click Select or type a Distinguished Name or Naming Context and type:


  4. Under Computer, click Select or type a domain or server.
  5. Select localhost from the list or type localhost:389.
  6. Click OK.
  7. Under the OU=Instances, find the CN that was reported in vpxd.log file:

    For example:


  8. Click on this CN entry. The right pane will be empty.

    Caution: If the right pane is not empty, do not remove the entry.

  9. Delete this CN entry.
Note: In your environment, the error message in the vpxd logs can have a different CN number. Ensure you search for that particular string.

To delete the stale ADAM database entry on the vCenter Server Appliance:

Important: VMware recommends to take a snapshot of the vCenter Server Appliance before proceeding. When you have verified that the issue is resolved, remove the snapshot.
  1. Log in to the vCenter Server Appliance as root.
  2. Run this command to export the current ADAM database configuration:

    slapcat -l /tmp/ldap.ldif

  3. Back up this file before proceeding to the next step.
  4. Run this command to create a copy the exported file:

    cp /tmp/ldap.ldif /tmp/ldapbackup.ldif

  5. Run this command to stop the LDAP service:

    service ldap stop

  6. Open the /tmp/ldap.ldif file using a text editor.
  7. Locate the CN entry indicated in the vpxd.log file.

    Note: Ensure you include the entire entry, including Timestamp: [timestampdata]. Delete these entries:

    dn: [cn_name]
    Timestamp: [timestampdata]

  8. Save and close the file.
  9. Move all of the files within /var/lib/ldap, excluding DB_CONFIG to a backup folder or location.
  10. Run this command to import the modified LDAP data:

    slapadd -l /tmp/ldap.ldif

  11. Run this command to start the LDAP service:

    service ldap start

  12. Run this command to restart the vCenter Server service:

    service vmware-vpxd restart

Additional Information

Manually backing up and restoring the VMware vCenter Server 4.x and 5.x ADAM instance data
Error: "Fault Module: ntdll.dll" when starting vCenter Server
vCenter Server 5.x が次のエラーで起動に失敗する:LDAP エントリの追加に失敗しました (Failed to add LDAP entry)
vCenter Server 5.x 启动失败,并显示错误:无法添加 LDAP 条目 (Failed to add LDAP entry)