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vSphere, XenDT, Server Upgrade Path

We currently have vSphere 5.0 hosting VM's on HPDL360 with Citrix XDT 5.6 providing VDI.

The hosts are pretty much maxed out during the day.

We have the fortune of having an HP 7000 series chassis and two blades.  My plan is to buy one more blade, and enough RAM to take all three to 384GB.  This should give us 2.5x the GHz and 50% more RAM than we have currently.

I'm trying to think of the best way to migrate from the old to the new hardware will keeping everything up.

An important point is that XDT 5.6 will NOT talk to vCenter 5.5, so I have to keep vCenter 5.0 up until I can get Citrix XDT 7.6 up on the new blades.  Fortunately I have another vCenter license and enough ESXi license to run two of my three blades and those two can handle my full load.

My current plan is to stand up two new blades on ESXi 5.5 and stand up vCenter 5.5.  Then stand up the virtual security and backup appliances in vSphere 5.5.

I will then begin to power down servers (not related to Citrix XDT 5.6) in vSphere 5.0 and discover them in vSphere 5.5 on the SAN, boot them, update vhardware, etc.  I’m not sure, but I don’t think you can move machines from vSphere 5 to vSphere 5.5.

Then I'll stand up the new Citrix XDT 7.6 infrastructure inside vSphere 5.5.  I'll test XDT 7.6 until all users are happy and then decommission the XDT 5.6 infrastructure.  Then decommission the vSphere 5.0 infrastructure, move the old hosts to the DR site, set them up in vSphere 5.5 as an SRM recovery site.


That's my plan, but I'd love to hear if I'm missing something if there are better ways.  One bonus question.  I have two virtual Citrix Netscalers (VPX).  Any input on moving them from vSphere5.0 to 5.5?
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whoam
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whoam
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2 Solutions
 
Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE^2)VMware and Virtualization ConsultantCommented:
, but I don’t think you can move machines from vSphere 5 to vSphere 5.5.

Completely compatible, no issues.

If the VMs are on a SAN, just deregister from the Inventory on 5.0, and register them in the inventory on 5.5. (right click the VMX, add to Inventory).
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whoamAuthor Commented:
Andrew,
Thanks.  Yeah, that's what I meant by discover them on the SAN.  I just don't think there's a way to go to vCenter 5 and push them to vCenter 5.5 or pull them from vCenter 5.5.

Thanks
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Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE^2)VMware and Virtualization ConsultantCommented:
Simple, if they are already on the SAN.

1. Power the VMs OFF.

2. De-Register from the vCenter 5.0 inventory.

3.  vCenter 5.5, browse the SAN datastores and Register the VMs.

4. Done.

see my EE Articles for examples, Step 6 shows how to register a VM

HOW TO: Clone or Copy a virtual machine in VMware vSphere Hypervisor ESX/ESXi 4.x or ESXi 5.0

HOW TO: Select the right answer to "I Moved It" or "I Copied It" in VMware vSphere (ESXi)
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whoamAuthor Commented:
Andrew,

I'm sorry to pick nits, but what I was talking about not being able to do is vmotions/storage motion from vCenter 5.0 to vCenter 5.5.  Deregistration/discovery is simple.  I've done it too many times to count.

Now, on to the Netscalers.  Understand these are network appliances.  So my questions there revolve around virtual networking not really virtual hardware.  I'm thinking that if I keep my vSwitch names and vLANs the same from vSphere 5.0 to 5.0 they should come over fine.  I've just never moved a VPX before and would love to hear from someone who has.

May just have to open a case with Citrix.
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Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE^2)VMware and Virtualization ConsultantCommented:
I'm sorry to pick nits, but what I was talking about not being able to do is vmotions/storage motion from vCenter 5.0 to vCenter 5.5.  Deregistration/discovery is simple.  I've done it too many times to count.

Correct at present, things may change in the future, with future releases of vSphere, and vMotion and Storage vMotion between different Datacenters.

Now, on to the Netscalers.  Understand these are network appliances.  So my questions there revolve around virtual networking not really virtual hardware.  I'm thinking that if I keep my vSwitch names and vLANs the same from vSphere 5.0 to 5.0 they should come over fine.  I've just never moved a VPX before and would love to hear from someone who has.

As the changes are occurring outside of the VM, it does not matter, but the Virtual Machines *MUST* be on the same network as before, so if that involves a vLAN change on the virtual machine portgroup, it needs to be in place.

The OS within the VM however, does not know, about the vSwitch, vLAN, all that matters is it's connected to the correct network.

So virtual machine portgroup, vSwitch name - does not matter.

Just ensure that it's connected to the same network as previous, how you present that on the host, is up to you.
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whoamAuthor Commented:
Citrix said to see CTX200278 which talks about a known issue and workaroung for VPX on 5.1 and 5.5.
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whoamAuthor Commented:
All points to expert, just adding in my notes for other readers
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