Use Command Line to Power off a Virtual Machine – VMWare

Using the ESXi 5.x esxcli command to power off a virtual machine

The esxcli command can be used locally or remotely to power off a virtual machine running on ESXi 5.x. For more information, see the esxcli vm Commands section of the vSphere Command-Line Interface Reference.

  1. Open a console session where the esxcli tool is available, either in the ESXi Shell, the vSphere Management Assistant (vMA), or the location where the vSphere Command-Line Interface (vCLI) is installed.
  2. Get a list of running virtual machines, identified by World ID, UUID, Display Name, and path to the .vmx configuration file, using this command:
    esxcli vm process list
  3. Power off one of the virtual machines from the list using this command:
    esxcli vm process kill --type=[soft,hard,force] --world-id=WorldNumber
    Notes: Three power-off methods are available. Soft is the most graceful, hard performs an immediate shutdown, and force should be used as a last resort. Alternate power off command syntax is: esxcli vm process kill -t [soft,hard,force] -w WorldNumber
  4. Repeat Step 2 and validate that the virtual machine is no longer running.

For ESXi 4.1:

  1. Get a list of running virtual machines, identified by World ID, UUID, Display Name, and path to the .vmx configuration file, using this command:
    esxcli vms vm list
  2. Power off one of the virtual machines from the list using this command:
    esxcli vms vm kill --type=[soft,hard,force] --world-id=WorldNumber

Using the ESXi command-line utility vim-cmd to power off the virtual machine

  1. On the ESXi console, enter Tech Support mode and log in as root. For more information, see Tech Support Mode for Emergency Support (1003677).
  2. Get a list of all registered virtual machines, identified by their VMID, Display Name, and path to the .vmx configuration file, using this command:
    vim-cmd vmsvc/getallvms
  3. To get the current state of a virtual machine:
    vim-cmd vmsvc/power.getstate VMID
  4. Shutdown the virtual machine using the VMID found in Step 2 and run:
    vim-cmd vmsvc/power.shutdown VMID
    Note: If the virtual machine fails to shut down, use this command:
    vim-cmd vmsvc/power.off VMID

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