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Licensing for VMware vSphere 5.5 (2064117)


This article provides clarification about licensing for VMware vSphere 5.5.


As of vSphere 5.5, these provisions apply to all paid editions of vSphere, vSphere with Operations Management, and vCloud Suite:
  • vSphere 5.5 is licensed on a per-processor basis (per-CPU).
  • Each physical processor (CPU) in a server must have at least one vSphere 5 processor license key assigned to be able to run vSphere.
  • There are no restrictions on physical cores or physical RAM.
  • There are no restrictions on the number of virtual machines that can run on each properly licensed vSphere 5.5 processor.
  • You can configure up to the maximum number of vCPUs per virtual machine as specified in the vSphere 5.5 Configuration Maximums Guide.
These provisions apply to the free vSphere 5.5 Hypervisor:
  • The vSphere 5.5 Hypervisor retains the 8 vCPU/virtual machine limit.
  • The physical RAM restriction (32 GB/host) has been removed from the free vSphere 5.5 Hypervisor.

Frequently asked questions

Q. Does the new vSphere 5 licensing model (per-processor without limitation on the number of virtual machines, cores, or amount of physical RAM) apply to vSphere 5.0, 5.1, and 5.5?

A. Yes. The vSphere 5 licensing model applies to vSphere 5.0, 5.1, and 5.5 customers. This also applies to vSphere with Operations Management customers.

Q. Does the new vSphere 5 licensing model apply to existing licenses of vSphere 4.x or prior?

A. No. The new vSphere licensing model applies only to new purchases of vSphere licenses or to existing licenses of vSphere 4.x or older that are upgraded to vSphere 5.

Additional Information

For related information, see:
In vSphere 5.0 and 5.1, the updated licensing model requires 5.0 Update 2 or higher, and 5.1 Update 1 or higher respectively. For more information, see the vCenter Essentials no longer enforces vRAM usage limit of 192 GB section of the release notes:

See Also

Request a Product Feature

To request a new product feature or to provide feedback on a VMware product, please visit the Request a Product Feature page.


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