Migrate Option Is Grayed Out

I’ve encountered this problem in a myriad of ESXi host versions and vCenter versions. For unknown reasons, I am able to migrate some VMs and not others. I’ve tried a number of resolutions in various KB articles, but the only approach that has worked thus far is removing the VM from inventory and adding it back.

Symptoms: Migrate, Move To, Remove from Inventory, and Delete from Disk options are greyed out for a powered-on VM.

To resolve this issue, remove the virtual machine from the vCenter Server Inventory and add it back. Note: When removing a virtual machine from the vCenter Server Inventory, the previous performance statistics for the virtual machine are lost.

Caution: Before performing these steps, make a note of the datastore where the virtual machine resides.

  1. In the vSphere Client, right-click the powered-off virtual machine and click Remove from Inventory.
  2. Click Yes when prompted to confirm the removal.
  3. Click Home > Storage
  4. Open the Datastore and folder where the VM’s vmx file is stored
  5. Right-click the .vmx file and click Register VM. This might be “Add to Inventory” in earlier versions.
  6. Follow the steps in the wizard to add the virtual machine back to the Inventory.
  7. Click Home > Hosts and Clusters.
  8. Right-click the virtual machine. The migrate option is now available.
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