Failure to Connect Directly to ESXi/ESX host from VMware Client

This article discusses what to do when you fail to connect to your ESXi/ESX host from the VMware vSphere client. The error message will look like this:

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The solution to this issue is to restart the management agents either from the IPMI iKVM or from the local console/SSH.

IMPORTANT: Restarting the management agents may impact any tasks that are running on the ESXi/ESX host at the time of the restart.

Restarting from the IPMI iKVM:

1. Access the web interface of your IPMI and use the KVM functionality.

2. Access the virtual function keys from the KVM Console > Virtual Media > Virtual Keyboard.

3. Hit any key to wake up the screen.

4. Click F2 on the virtual keyboard to go to this screen:

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5. Log in using your system root credentials:

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6. Select “Troubleshooting Options”:

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7. Select “Restart Management Agents”:

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8. Click F11 on the virtual keyboard to confirm.

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9. Restarting the management agents may take several minutes. Hit Enter when the task is complete.

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10. Keep clicking ESC to get out of the menu and to log out.

Restarting from the Local Console or SSH:

1. Log in to the SSH or the local console as root. Keep in mind that SSH access is disabled by default. Read this article on how to enable SSH.

2. Run these commands:

/etc/init.d/hostd restart
/etc/init.d/vpxa restart

If restarting the management agent fails, try restarting it a second time.
This article is based on the official VMware Knowledge Base solution for this connection issue.

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