VM migration from ESX 4 to ESXi5.5

I have an older hardware running ESX 4 in DAS and files are stored locally host 11 VMs
I have got three ESX 5.5 setup with vcenter essentials plus that would manage only three ESX and the LUN is shared using ISCSI from netapps.
Once I get new server and switches on production, I need to move all VM from old ESX 4 to 5.5.

What are the detail recommended process and pre-requisites -
I presume all VM has to in shutdown state for cold storage migration
I probably have to remove all snapshots
Can ESX 4 be added to Vcenter outside the cluster or it would not allow addition of one ESX in Essentials even though it is outside cluster? If added would I be able to datatstore to datastore migration. From local DAS in old to ISCSI in new.

Is it wise to just to P2V of all 10 machine and add to new VM cluster and install new vmware tools?
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pchettriIT DirectorAsked:
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Uni KittyCommented:
Since you have essentials and you're not planning to upgrade the older hardware server from 4 to 5, I would recommend using converter. This will take care of converting to the new vmfs versions. Yes you must commit all snapshots first.
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Alessandro ScafariaInfrastructure Premier Field AdministratorCommented:
I would suggest to use Veeam software for your case study....

Once all your new "iron infrastructure" is set it up, you're ready to go:

1. From a new Windows based VM, download a Veeam Availability Suite Trial from there:

http://www.veeam.com/downloads/

2. Add your brand new Vcenter Essential to the Veeam backup infrastructure.....

3. Add your standalone "OLD" ESXi host to the Veeam backup infrastructure....

4. Perform a VM Quick Migration Job following this guide:

http://helpcenter.veeam.com/backup/80/vsphere/migration_job.html

5. You're done! :-)

Let us know...
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Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE^2)VMware and Virtualization ConsultantCommented:
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