VMWare 5.5

We have a VMWare 4.1 ESXi environment.  It has two hosts and a dozen VM's.  I purchased a two additional servers with more horsepower (16 cores, 160gb ram).  I installed the 1st new server with VMWare 5.5 ESXi.  When I tried to add the host, it complained about the VSphere VCenter server could not add the new host.  I assume that is because it is a 5.5 host.

My next thought is that all I need to do is upgrade the vcenter server.  Is this correct.  Do I have to upgrade the server and the client?  Is the client automatically upgraded when you install the new server or visa versa?  Have myself confused now.

Does this upgrade affect the VM's.  Does it have to be done with the VM's offline?

Will upgrading or installing the lastest vcenter server affect the running vm's?

I think you get the point.  :)
sfletcher1959VPAsked:
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Stelian StanNetwork AdministratorCommented:
If your vCenter is not at 5.5 lever please upgrade that first. Upgrading the vCenter will not affect the VM's. The upgrade needs to be online not offline.
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Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE^2)VMware and Virtualization ConsultantCommented:
vCenter Server needs to be at 5.5, to manage 5.5 hosts.

Upgrading vCenter Server does not affect the VMs.

You will need to upgrade the vSphere Client from 4.1 to 5.5, after upgrading vCenter Server from 4.1 to 5.5.

Upgrades from vCenter 4.1 to 5.5, seldom work correctly, and it may be worth, considering a fresh installation of vCenter 5.5 from scratch, and then add your new 5.5 Hosts.
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sfletcher1959VPAuthor Commented:
Can I install a fresh installation for vCenter 5.5 on the same server or does it have to be on a different server.  Also can it be on a virtual server or does it have to be on a physical server.

If I can install on a virtual server, are there any draw backs to doing that?
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Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE^2)VMware and Virtualization ConsultantCommented:
You would need to install vCenter 5.5 on a new server, the two cannot exist together.

It is supported on a physical or virtual server.

There are no drawbacks to a virtual server, DR is also easier, because it's virtual.
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sfletcher1959VPAuthor Commented:
On occasion, we have brought the environment up and found the hosts disconnected and the VM's orphaned.  If the vcenter server is a vm, we wouldn't be to recover.  Is this correct?
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Stelian StanNetwork AdministratorCommented:
You can still recover by connecting to that host that the vCenter is running on.
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Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE^2)VMware and Virtualization ConsultantCommented:
I'm not sure what previous issues you are suffering with.

But virtual machines run on the ESXi Hosts, vCenter Server is just used as a management server.

In the event of any issues with vCenter Server, you can connect directly to the ESXi servers, and complete VM maintenance.

e.g. one question often asked, is how do you start/stop vCenter Server, which is done, but connecting to a host with the vCenter VM, and then start and stop the VM on that host.

We've been deploying vCenter Server as a VM for many years, since approx 2008.
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sfletcher1959VPAuthor Commented:
I have an additional question, but since this has been answered I will close and open a new question.

Thanks!  Fantastic as usual!!!
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