ESXi host root password does not work from SSH or console due to locked account or expired password. This article will help to reset new root password for ESXi host root account using Host profile without reinstalling the host.
Step 1: Extract Host profile from the same host where we have the password issue.
Step 2: Edit the newly created Host profile.
Step 3: Go to Security and Services > Security Settings > Security > User configuration > Root.
Step 4: Select Fixed password configuration, set the new password and click on Finish.
Step 5: Attach the profile to ESXi host and Check Host Profile Compliance.
Step 6: You will see that the Host is Not Compliant with password difference.
Step 7: Remediate the Host against newly created Host Profile. Right click on host > Host profile > Remediate. Uncheck the reboot option.
Step 8: Try to access the Host with the new root password, you should be able to login to host.
VMware Knowledge Base: Reset lost root password for ESXi host using Host profile