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Step 20:  Upgrade the ESXi hosts using Update Manager

20.1: The first step to carry out is to create a new baseline with the ESXi image. To do this go to Update Manager from the home page on the vSphere client

vCenter Upgrade Update Manager

20.2: Click on the ESXi Images tab as you’ll need to upload the image before configuring a new baseline. Select Import ESXi image

Update Manager Import ISO Image

20.3: Select the ESXi image that was downloaded earlier and click Next
Update Manager Import ISO Image Select Image

20.4: Accept the certificate if you’re prompted by click Ignore

Update Manager Ignore Certificate

20.5: The image will begin to upload

Update Manager Import Progress

20.6: Once completed click Next

ESXi image import

20.7: Create a new baseline and click Finish

Update Manager Create Baseline

20.8: Go to Baselines and Groups and the newly created baseline will appear

Update Manager ESXi Release version

20.9: Next, click on Compliance View and it will bring you to the root of vCenter within Update Manager. Select Attach and add the Upgrade Baseline for ESX 5.5 and select Attach

Update Manager Attach Baseline

20.10: Next click on Scan and select Upgrades as the scan criteria. Click Scan

Update Manager Upgrades Dialog

20.11: This will kick off a scan across the entire environment.  As there are two different sites with separate Update Manager Servers the above steps will need to be carried out there also.

20.12: The next steps are to update the individual ESXi hosts to not cause any downtime. Put one of the hosts in maintenance mode and migrate any VMs from it. The host will need a reboot following the upgrade. Once the selected host is in maintenance mode select Update Manager

20.13: If you see an error about ‘host software configuration requires a reboot’. Follow the instructions and reboot the host. – http://kb.vmware.com/selfservice/microsites/search.do?language=en_US&cmd=displayKC&externalId=2034945

Update Manager Host Upgrade

20.14: Once the host is rebooted re-run the Update Manager scan. Compliance will now show Non-complaint rather than Incompatible.

Update Manager Host Upgrade Step 1

20.15: Next click on Stage to push the software out to the host. This will just speed up the upgrade process. Once the staging has been completed then click on Remediate to complete the upgrade process

Update Manager Host Upgrade Remediate

20.16: Once the Host Upgrade is selected click Next during the remediate process

Update Manager Host Upgrade Step 2

20.17: Accept the EULA and click Next

Update Manager Host Upgrade License Agreement

20.18: Select remove incompatible third-party software if needed. Double-check what VIBs are installed on your hosts before upgrading. Click Next.

Update Manager Host Upgrade Step 2

20.19: Set the task to run immediately and click next

Update Manager Host Upgrade Step 3

20.20: Leave the defaults and click Next

Update Manager Host Upgrade Step 4

20.21: Choose what options you’d like to use as part of the upgrade and click Next

Update Manager Host Upgrade Step 5

20.22: Click Finish to complete the task

Update Manager Host Upgrade Step 6

20.23: A new remediation task will begin.

Update Manager Remediate Host Update Manager Remediate Host Successful Update Manager Remediate Host Progress

20.24: Keep an eye on the remediation in case there are any alerts that appear. Once the remediation has completed Update Manager will show the host as being compliant.

Update Manager Remediate Host Complete

20.25: Exit maintenance mode and migrate some VMs back onto the host. Follow the same above steps on all the remaining ESXi hosts.


Step 21: Upgrade DVSwitch versions

21.1: Once the ESXi hosts have been upgraded you can then upgrade any dvSwitches. Go to Networking and select the dvSwitch. Check the version number. If it’s a previous version to the current version of vCenter it will ask for an upgrade. The ESXi hosts need to be upgraded first so now is the time to upgrade the dvSwitches.

dvSwitch Upgrade Step 1

21.2: Select upgrade and select vSphere Distributed Switch Version: 5.5.0. Click Next to continue.

dvSwitch Upgrade Step 2

21.3: The hosts are checked for compatibility. Once they get the all clear click on Next.

dvSwitch Upgrade Step 3

21.4: And that’s it. The version of you distributed switch has been upgraded


Step 22: Upgrade VMware tools

22.1: You can view the VM Version and tools status from the top cluster view. If the tools are out-of-date they will need to be updated.

Upgrade VMware Tools Step 1

22.2: Open a console session  and select VM-> Guest -> Install/Upgrade VMware Tools.

Upgrade VMware Tools Step 2

22.3: You can select Automatic mode if you want to quickly update, however I need to ensure that the vShield agent is installed so I’ve selected Interactive Mode and clicked Ok

Upgrade VMware Tools Upgrade

22.4: Select Run setup when prompted

Upgrade VMware Tools Step 3

22.5: The installation will then begin. Click Next on the first dialog

Upgrade VMware Tools Step 4

22.6: Select Custom and click Next

Upgrade VMware Tools Step 5
22.7: Click Next and then click Finish to complete the install. You may be asked to reboot the server, most likely you will have to.

Congratulations!! You’ve now completed all steps of the upgrade. You can choose to upgrade the hardware version of the VMs as well. In my case it was decided due to the nature of some of the VMs the benefits they would get from the hardware upgrade it was decided to leave that upgrade component until a later date.

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