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Experience of Upgrading vCenter Server vCenter Server 5.5 Update 2b 5.5 U2b to latest vCenter Server 5.5 Update 3e 5.5 U3e

This is a post, to support

Install a new VERSION of vCenter Server for Windows, and NOT an Upgrade.

A client, decided they wanted to update ESXi hosts to ESXi-5.5.0-20160804001-standard (Build 4179633), what is important, is ANY ESXi build after ESXi-5.5.0-20151204001-standard (Build 3248547)   Update 3b

MUST NOW be managed by at least vCenter Server Update 3b or later.

The client currently has

vCenter Server 5.5 Update 2b, and ESXi 5.5 Update 2b Hosts.

All was upgraded correctly to

vCenter Server 5.5 Update 3b      5.5 U3b      

Build - 3252642

and then all hosts were upgraded to builds

ESXi-5.5.0-20160804001-standard (Build 4179633)

ALL WORKING perfectly....BUT the client wanted to update to the current version of.... vCenter Server for Windows...

vCenter Server 5.5 Update 3e

and this is where it all went WRONG.

SSO installed and upgraded fine, Web Client all installed and upgraded fine.

Inventory Service fails to install..... ....

Client does NOT want to re-install a NEW version of 3e, and lose historical data and performance.... does not want to upgrade to vCenter 6.0 for Windows or Appliance...

SO we had to escalate to VMware Support....

and currently, they've been looking for 3 hours, and not come up with a solution, other than re-install a new version of 3e, 6.0 as the upgrade will not work!!!!

So......I'll post a fix when there is one!

At present the client cannot move onto vCenter Server 6.0, because of impacts or vCloud, SRM and NetApp...
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Update, we cannot install or upgrade SSO now.

it's complaining about an package which is broken.

VMware Support want me to download the 3.5GB ISO again, despite the MD5 SIGS all being correct as published at VMware.
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Downloading another 3.5GB iso.....to test!
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and what do you know EXACTLY THE SAME!
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so, update failed, so  now we are trying update to 3b.
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End result BROKE

no solution, other than re-install a new VM, new Windows 2012 R2, and re-install current version of vCenter Server.

So...at present its been left, to switch to vCenter Appliance 6.5, 7.0, 8.0 when released.