The Citrix guys in my company has a bad habbit of using local storage, probably because they have had some bad performance experiences in the past. Local storage is not good for the vSphere admin, as vMotion is set out of play, and I need to move things around manually when doing maintenance. Furthermore the Citrix provisioning tool is not very good at launching/deploying VM’s on hosts that has a lot of free resources, so pretty often we end up with clusters where 50% of the hosts is utilizing 90% of the resources (mainly memory) and 50 % is doing nothing 🙁

To mitigate this I have written a script to “balance” the VM’s equally across the clusters. The script takes a parameter with the cluster name, and you are able to exclude specific hosts by editing the file.

# Script to balance VMs across ESXi hosts in cluster using local storage.
# Created by
# Execute with cluster name as parameter

#Make sure the vmware modules are loaded
Get-Module -name vmware* -ListAvailable | Import-Module

#Connect to the viserver
connect-viserver hostname.vcenter -alllinked -Credential (Get-Credential)

#$cluster = "xxx" # Manually define the cluster value. For testing purposes.

# Exclude hosts from the operation, use * as wildcard and seperate with |
$excluded = "" 

#Check if the cluster parameter is set.
if ($cluster -eq "") {
    write-host "You forgot to specify a cluster, please try again..."

# Fire up the main loop
while ($true) {

# Pull out the target hosts
$hosttargetsRaw =  get-cluster $cluster | get-vmhost | where {($_.connectionstate -eq "Connected")} | select name,@{N="VMCount";E={(get-vm -location $}} | Sort-Object VMCount -Descending

# Trim the list for exclusions 
$hosttargetstrimmed = $hosttargetsRaw -notmatch $excluded

# Calculate the difference between the most and least populated hosts
$diff = ($hosttargetstrimmed | select -First 1).VMCount - ($hosttargetstrimmed | select -Last 1).VMCount

if ($diff -gt 4) {

# Define the source and destination hosts
$sourcehosts = $hosttargetstrimmed | select -First 2
$desthosts = $hosttargetstrimmed | select -last 2

# Check if we have only one hosts doing nothing
$bottomdiff = ($desthosts | select -first 1).VMcount - ($desthosts | select -Last 1).VMCount

$i = 0

foreach ($sourcehost in ${
	if ($bottomdiff -gt 4) {
        $curdesthost = $desthosts[1].name
    }else {
        $curdesthost = $desthosts[$i].name
# Get the destination datastore		
$destds = (get-datastore -vmhost $curdesthost local*).name

# get the VM's we want to move
$targets = get-vmhost $sourcehost | get-vm | select -first 2

# Move the VM's 2 from each hosts = 4 VM's pr. loop
foreach ($target in $targets) {
    echo "move-vm -vm $target -Destination $curdesthost -Datastore $destds -RunAsync"
# Wait for the VM's to be moved before looping again.  
sleep -Seconds 90
}else {
    write-host "Balancing of cluster $cluster is finished, difference between most and least populated host is $diff VMs..."

I hope you are able to use this, at least as inspiration for getting on with your own.
And remember, this script can of course be combined with my powershell menu script found here:



Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Are you human? * Time limit is exhausted. Please reload CAPTCHA.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.