vCenter Server Appliance hangs after toggling certificate setting

I deployed a new vCSA in my environment (moving from Windows-based to the appliance) and needed to change the hostname post-migration.  Changing the hostname required a reboot, but afterwards I couldn’t authenticate to the web GUI due to a certificate error.  In the admin portal, I pressed the “Toggle Certificate Setting” button and rebooted the vCSA thinking that this would regenerate the self-signed certificate.  However, the server did not reboot, it was hanging at:

Waiting for the embedded database to start up: .[OK]

This lead to a little Google research; below is the step by step process of getting the vCSA back up and running.

  1. Get console access through the vSphere client by connecting directly to the host the vCSA is installed on.
  2. Restart the appliance and at the GRUB boot loader screen press the down arrow
  3. Press “p” and enter the root password
  4. Using the arrow keys, highlight “VMWare vCenter Server Appliance” and press “e” to edit the boot options
  5. Highlight the “Kernel….” line, press “e” again to edit the boot string
  6. Append ” 1” (note the space) to the end of the line so that it appears “…showopts 1“.  Remove quotes.
  7. Press enter and then press “b” to boot.
  8. The server should then boot
  9. Login as root
    vcenter: ~# rm /etc/vmware-vpx/ssl/allow_regeneration
    vcenter:~# reboot

And that’s it, the certificates regenerated and I was able to log back into vCSA.  If this still doesn’t work, check this link for more information.

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