ESXi hosts do not respond and is grayed out in vCenter
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ESXi hosts do not respond and is grayed out in vCenter


Article ID: 345273


Updated On:


VMware vCenter Server VMware vSphere ESXi


This article provides troubleshooting steps to determine why an ESXi host is inaccessible from vSphere Client.

  • ESXi host is not responding to vCenter Server
  • All virtual machines that are registered to the  ESXi host are grayed out.
  • You are unable to connect to the ESXi host directly using vSphere Client.
  • The vpxd.log files residing in vCenter Server may contain events indicating an error when attempting to communicate with the ESXi host. The events always contain the words vmodl.fault.HostCommunication and may appear similar to the following examples:

    [VpxLRO] -- ERROR task-internal-6433833 -- host-24499 -- vmodl.fault.HostCommunication:
    (vmodl.fault.HostCommunication) {
    dynamicType = <unset>,
    faultCause = (vmodl.MethodFault) null,
    msg = "",

    [VpxdMoHost::CollectRemote] Stats collection cannot proceed because host may no longer be available or reachable: vmodl.fault.HostCommunication.

    For more information on the location of the vpxd.log file, see
Location of vCenter Server log files (1021804) .

The issue may appear on multiple hosts, keep note on the opID that identifies the offending ESXi host:

2012-04-09T15:03:51.540-04:00 [29348 verbose 'Default' opID=f6a80d55] [ServerAccess] Attempting to connect to service at

  • If this issue occurs due to a communication issue between the ESXi host and the vCenter Server, but the host is still responsive to user interaction, you may see events similar to these in the /var/log/vmware/vpxa.log files:

    Failed to bind heartbeat socket (-1). Using any IP.

    Agent can't send heartbeats.msg size: 66, sendto() returned: Network is unreachable.


VMware ESX 4.0.x
VMware vCenter Server 5.0.x
VMware vCenter Server 5.1.x
VMware vSphere ESXi 6.0
VMware vCenter Server 5.5.x
VMware vSphere ESXi 6.5
VMware vSphere ESXi 5.0
VMware vCenter Server 4.1.x
VMware vCenter Server 6.5.x
VMware vCenter Server 4.0.x
VMware ESXi 3.5.x Embedded
VMware ESX Server 3.5.x
VMware vSphere ESXi 5.5
VMware vSphere ESXi 6.7
VMware vSphere ESXi 7.0
VMware ESXi 4.1.x Embedded
VMware ESX 4.1.x
VMware vSphere ESXi 5.1
VMware ESXi 4.0.x Installable
VMware ESXi 3.5.x Installable
VMware ESXi 4.0.x Embedded
VMware VirtualCenter 2.5.x
VMware ESXi 4.1.x Installable
VMware vCenter Server 6.0.x


Networking issue, ESXi host hardware related,storage,hostd or other services.


To determine why an ESXi host is inaccessible:

  1. Verify the current state of the ESXi host hardware and power. Physically go to the ESXi host hardware, and make note of any lights on the face of the server hardware that may indicate the power or hardware status. For more information regarding the hardware lights, consult the hardware vendor documentation or support.

    Note: Depending on the configuration of your physical environment, you may consider connecting to the physical host by using a remote hardware interface provided by your hardware vendor. For more information about how this interface interprets the condition of the hardware, consult the hardware vendor documentation or support.
  2. Determine the state of the user interface of the ESXi host in the physical console.

    Note: Depending on the configuration of your physical environment, you may consider connecting to the physical host by using a remote application such as a Keyboard/Video/Mouse switch or a remote hardware interface provided by your hardware vendor. These interfaces are known to interfere with keyboard and mouse functionality. VMware recommends verifying the responsiveness at the local physical console prior to taking any action.

  3. Verify that DNS is configured correctly on the ESX/ESXi host. For more information, see:
  4. Determine if the ESXi host responds to ping responses, there are several menu options provided to test the management network. If the ESXi host responds to user interaction, but does not respond to pings, you may have a networking issue. For more information, see ESXi hosts have intermittent or no network connectivity (1004109).
  5. Verify that you can connect to the VMware ESXi host using vSphere Client:
    1. Open the vSphere Client.
    2. Specify the hostname or IP address of the VMware ESXi host, along with the appropriate credentials for the root user.
    3. Click Login.
  6. Determine if the ESXi host is rebooted.
    1. Physically log in to the console of the ESXi host.
    2. Type the command uptime to view the uptime of the ESXi host. If the ESXi host is recently rebooted, see Determining why a ESXi host was powered off or restarted (1019238).

Additional Information

High Availability
High Availability (HA) feature uses a different trigger than vCenter Server when ensuring that an  ESXi is operational. The following is a brief explanation of each criteria:
  • The Host connection and power state alarm is triggered as a result of a HostCommunication fault. A HostCommunication fault occurs if vCenter Server is unable to communicate to an  ESXi host using the vSphere API.
  • The HA isolation response is triggered as a result of an agent on the ESXi host that is unable to communicate with agents on other ESXi hosts (not the vCenter server). It must also fail to communicate with a designated isolation address (by default, it is the default gateway). If both of these conditions are met, the host performs the designated HA isolation response.

Both systems are managed by different agents and may communicate with different hosts on the network. Therefore, with respect to the relationship:

  • A host that is not responding within vCenter Server does not always trigger a high availability isolation response. It may still be maintaining a network connection with other hosts or its isolation address and thus is not isolated .
  • A host experiencing an HA isolation response is likely to appear as Not Responding within vCenter Server.

Troubleshooting an ESXi/ESX host in non responding state
Testing network connectivity with the ping command
Identifying issues with and setting up name resolution on ESX/ESXi Server
Diagnosing the vSphere Client when it fails to connect to an ESX/ESXi host or vCenter Server
ESX/ESXi hosts have intermittent or no network connectivity
Interpreting an ESX/ESXi host purple diagnostic screen
Configuring VMware ESXi Management Network from the direct console
Determining why an ESX/ESXi host does not respond to user interaction at the console
Assessing commonalities of an outage affecting multiple virtual machines
Determining why an ESXi/ESX host was powered off or restarted
Location of log files for VMware products
ESX/ESXi ホストは非応答およびグレー表示されています
Reconnecting or adding an VMware ESXi host to VMware vCenter Server fails with the error: Agent can't send heartbeats because socket address structure initialization is failing
Clearing the DNS cache in VMware ESXi 5.5 and later hosts