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VMware ESX/ESXi 4/5.x - How to Change the vmnic Name

Information

The below article provides the steps for changing the vmnic name.
It so happens that if one replaces a faulty mezzanine or PCI NIC card on the servers, the VMware will name the NICs after the last vmnic name, even though hardware was replaced.

Details

If one wants to rename the vmnic name please follow the below mentioned procedure.
note:
This procedure needs to be performed very carefully, since this involves change of esx.conf file. Any wrong entry would cause an ESX host to fail and user might have to reinstall the OS.
  1. In order to change the vmnic name user needs to edit /etc/vmware/esx.conf file.
  2. SSH into ESXI host and make a backup of the configuration file.
    # cp /etc/vmware/esx.conf/etc/vmware/esx.conf.orig
  3. Edit the file with an editor such as VI:
    # cp /etc/vmware/esx.conf/etc/vmware/esx.conf.orig
    # vi /etc/vmware/esx.conf
  4. Find the replace the vmnic name.
  5. Save file
    #!wq
  6. Reboot ESX host.

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