VMware Device and Infrastructure Inventory

With the FlexNet Manager for Datacenters product, IT Asset Management can generate a license compliance position for applications installed on virtual machines created and managed by VMware virtualization products. To generate a complete and accurate license compliance position for some publishers, IT Asset Management also collects VMware infrastructure inventory (clusters, pools, hosts, and virtual machines), in addition to the normal hardware and software inventory of virtual machines.

To collect VMware inventory, IT Asset Management uses the following different components and processes:

Standard Components and Processes to VMware Device and Infrastructure Inventory

Inventory Type

Component Used

Process used


Device inventory

ndtrack, either installed locally or run remotely from the appropriate inventory beacon.

The inventory collection component collects the software and hardware inventory of all VMware virtual machines within the targeted subnet. This includes the relevant CPU affinity applicable to any of the virtual machines. For this, you need to create a discovery and inventory rule with the following settings:

Include the subnet containing the virtual machines in the target definition
Select the General hardware and software inventory option in the action definition.

For more information, see the topics under Creating an Action.

The inventory device records are visible on the Virtual Devices and Clusters (you can filter by VM type = VMware), and other views under the Inventory menu.

The hardware and software inventory used for normal license compliance calculations.

VMware infrastructure inventory

Inventory beacon

The inventory beacon connects to the VMware vCenter server and gets the complete hierarchy of clusters, pools, hosts, and virtual machines. The hierarchy is displayed on the Virtual Devices and Clusters page. You need the following settings:

Select the following options in the action definition:
Discover VMware infrastructure 
Gather VMware infrastructure inventory, with advanced recognition of VMware applications 
Configure the Password Store on the appropriate inventory beacon. See Using Password Manager When Collecting Specialized Inventory.

The cluster hierarchy information is useful in calculating the license position for applications from some specific software vendors. For example, a publisher may require you to buy an application license for the whole cluster if the application is installed on a virtual machine that is dynamically moved between the hosts of a vMotion cluster.