I had to shuffle some licenses around a month ago for a client who used up their licenses for a preproduction environment but was ready to decommission those servers and move those licenses back over to the production UCS chassis’ blades. While trying to move those licenses from one blade on the preproduction chassis to another production chassis blade, I noticed that I wasn’t able to assign those preproduction blades’ license back to Evaluation Mode. Here’s what it looks like:
As shown in the above screenshot, the option of selecting Evaluation Mode has been grayed out.
I went ahead and VI Client-ed directly to the host to see if I was able to configure it there but got the same result:
Noticed the field Expires at the bottom of the window with the value label: Expired. I suspect that since the evaluation grace period has passed, VMware does not allow the user to change the mode back to evaluation. This makes sense and after doing some research on the internet, a lot of users in forums have said that this was probably why.
What I ended up doing was remove the preproduction blade from vCenter and was then able to reclaim the license for that host.