Logging in to Multiple vCenter Servers at Once with PowerCLI

The Problem

I manage a large VMware environment spanning several individual vCenters, and I often need to run PowerCLI queries across the entire environment. I waste valuable seconds running Connect-ViServer and logging in for each and every vCenter I need to talk to. Wouldn't it be great if I could just log into all of them at once?

I can, and here's how I do it.

Annotation 2020-09-16 142625.png

The Script

The following Powershell script will let you define a list of vCenters to be accessed, securely store your credentials for each vCenter, log in to every vCenter with a single command, and also close the connections when they're no longer needed. It's also a great starting point for any other custom functions you'd like to incorporate into your PowerCLI sessions.

# PowerCLI_Custom_Functions.ps1
# Usage:
#   0) Edit $vCenterList to reference the vCenters in your environment.
#   1) Call 'Update-Credentials' to create/update a ViCredentialStoreItem to securely store your username and password.
#   2) Call 'Connect-vCenters' to open simultaneously connections to all the vCenters in your environment. 
#   3) Do PowerCLI things.
#   4) Call 'Disconnect-vCenters' to cleanly close all ViServer connections because housekeeping.
Import-Module VMware.PowerCLI

$vCenterList = @("vcenter1", "vcenter2", "vcenter3", "vcenter4", "vcenter5")

function Update-Credentials {
    $newCredential = Get-Credential
    ForEach ($vCenter in $vCenterList) {
        New-ViCredentialStoreItem -Host $vCenter -User $newCredential.UserName -Password $newCredential.GetNetworkCredential().password

function Connect-vCenters {
    ForEach ($vCenter in $vCenterList) {
        Connect-ViServer -Server $vCenter

function Disconnect-vCenters {
    Disconnect-ViServer -Server * -Force -Confirm:$false

The Setup

Edit whatever shortcut you use for launching PowerCLI (I use a tab in Windows Terminal - I'll do another post on that setup later) to reference the custom init script. Here's the commandline I use:

powershell.exe -NoExit -Command ". C:\Scripts\PowerCLI_Custom_Functions.ps1"

The Usage

Now just use that shortcut to open up PowerCLI when you wish to do things. The custom functions will be loaded and waiting for you.

  1. Start by running Update-Credentials. It will prompt you for the username+password needed to log into each vCenter listed in $vCenterList. These can be the same or different accounts, but you will need to enter the credentials for each vCenter since they get stored in a separate ViCredentialStoreItem. You'll also run this function again if you need to change the password(s) in the future.
  2. Log in to all the things by running Connect-vCenters.
  3. Do your work.
  4. When you're finished, be sure to call Disconnect-vCenters so you don't leave sessions open in the background.

No Comments Yet