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The ESXi host must not be configured to override virtual machine (VM) configurations.


Finding ID Version Rule ID IA Controls Severity
V-256444 ESXI-70-000092 SV-256444r886113_rule Medium
Each VM on an ESXi host runs in its own "vmx" process. Upon creation, a vmx process will look in two locations for configuration items, the ESXi host itself and the per-vm *.vmx file in the VM storage path on the datastore. The settings on the ESXi host are read first and take precedence over settings in the *.vmx file. This can be a convenient way to set a setting in one place and have it apply to all VMs running on that host. The difficulty is in managing those settings and determining the effective state. Since managing per-VM vmx settings can be fully automated and customized while the ESXi setting cannot be easily queried, the ESXi configuration must not be used.
VMware vSphere 7.0 ESXi Security Technical Implementation Guide 2023-06-21


Check Text ( C-60119r886111_chk )
From an ESXi shell, run the following command:

# stat -c "%s" /etc/vmware/settings

Expected result:


If the output does not match the expected result, this is a finding.
Fix Text (F-60062r886112_fix)
From an ESXi shell, run the following command:

# echo -n >/etc/vmware/settings