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Changing the default web access page in VMware VI3

The page that displays by default when you enter the hostname of an ESX or VirtualCenter server has links that some administrators like to suppress. In addition to the option to log into the server, there are also links to download the installation program for the VI Client application and the VI SDK and also to log into the scripted installer. Because authentication is not required for the default web page of the server, anybody can download the VI Client to the chagrin of administrators.

Having only the web access login page displayed instead is the preferred way. To get to the login page, you have to click the link from the default page or add “/ui” to your URL.

You can modify the default web page on both the ESX and VirtualCenter servers so the download links are not displayed or simply force a re-direct to the login page instead. To do this, simply follow the steps below. Please note that future upgrades to VirtualCenter or ESX will usually overwrite your changes and you will need to do this again after any upgrades.

For ESX servers, you will need to modify the index.html file that is located in the /var/lib/vmware/hostd/docroot directory on the ESX server. Be sure and make a backup of this file before editing it. You can log into the Service Console and edit it with Nano or use an application like WinSCP to connect to the server and edit the file. For VirtualCenter servers, you will need to modify the index.html file located in the C:\Documents and Settings\All Users\Application Data\VMware\VMware VirtualCenter\docRoot directory.


If you simply want to hide the download links, you can comment out those lines of code in the index.html file. The comment tags tell the browser to not execute a section of code and are usually used to add documentation to programming code. The start tag is “ ” (without the quotes). Add “ ” on a new line after the second tag to comment out the two download links under getting started. Then save the file and refresh your browser and the links should be gone. Alternatively, you can remove the code completely so the links will not be visible if you viewed the source of the web page.

If you wish to automatically re-direct the default welcome page to the login page, add the following line at the beginning of the index.html file: If you do not want the main page to show before the redirect, either delete all the other code in the file or add a “ ” at the very bottom of the file. This comments out all the code in the file except the first line.

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Hi Lee, Looks like it has, I just checked a 3.5 server and they have moved it to the /usr/lib/vmware/hostd/docroot directory. In 3.0.x it is located in the /var/lib/vmware/hostd/docroot directory. Thanks for pointing that out. Regards, Eric
Hi, This information is exactly what I am looking for, except in ESX 3.5 the index.html (and docroot) for that matter is not in the /usr/lib/ folder in your article... and I can't find it... How has it changed ? Thanks Lee.
In ESX3.5 index.html is located in /usr/lib/vmware/hostd/docroot. They changed the format somewhat...there is now a javascript file that contains all of the messages to be displayed. You can still comment out certain portions, though it's harder to tell which is which.