Resetting the vSphere 6 vCenter Server Appliance or Platform Services Controller root password

Written by Sam McGeown on 20/7/2015 · Read in about 1 min (208 words)
Published under VMware

I’m not sure how supported this is, but this process can recover a vSphere 6 vCenter Server Appliance or Platform Services Controller when you’ve lost the root password.

Download the OpenSUSE Rescue CD -

Mount the CD to the PSC Appliance


Reboot the appliance and enter the BIOS setup using F2, configure the CD-ROM as first-boot device. Save and exit to reboot into the SUSE Live-CD.

Once the Live-CD has booted to a desktop, you’ll see a 12GB volume at the top – that’s your PSC appliance root. Double click to open the disk and then copy the path, we’ll need it later.

Next open a shell console and change the root password (of the live CD root user) to something memorable

sudo passwd root

Next, open the /etc/shadow file and copy the root user’s password:

sudo cat /etc/shadow | grep “root”

Copy this line into the shadow file on the 12GB partition we looked at earlier and replace the existing “root” line.

sudo vi /run/media/linux/<GUID>/etc/shadow

Paste the updated root password into the file, replacing the old. use :wq! to force the file to write and quit. Reboot, remove the CD and boot the the appliance.

Log in to the console interface and reset the password correctly.

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