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Upgrading the existing VCenter 5.5 to the latest or the last Windows VCenter server edition ?

Posted on 2016-11-07
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Last Modified: 2016-11-10
I had this question after viewing VCenter migration steps and caveats from Windows VCenter to Linux appliance 6.0U2 ?.

People,

Can i just perform the inline upgrade on my existing Windows VCenter 5.5 Update 3 to the latest or probably the last edition of Windows VCenter using the below: https://my.vmware.com/group/vmware/details?productId=491&rPId=12931&downloadGroup=VC60U2#product_downloads

Would that be as easy as Next-Next-Finish simple upgrade ?

I ask this because I wanted to join new ESXi 6.0 hardware to the current vSphere 5.5 U3 environment but not sure if the newer ESXi can be managed by older VCenter.

Another question is that:

Existing Vcenter 5.5 U3 is running as Standard VCenter and all of the ESXi hosts 5.1 and 5.5 running with vSphere Enterprise Plus License. Can I join 3x ESXi 6.0U2 that is running as vSphere Essentials Plus to the VCenter 5.5 U3 Standard ?
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LVL 22

Assisted Solution

by:Luciano Patrão
Luciano Patrão earned 250 total points
ID: 41878234
Hi,

Just keep in mind that VMware is running away from Windows vCenter to Appliance vCenter.

Also next vCenter versions will have no need a Windows server anymore for thr VMware Update Manager.

You can run a 6.0 vCenter with older ESXi versions. But you cannot run ESXi 6.0 in a vCenter 5.x

Jail
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LVL 118
ID: 41878249
Yes you can perform, an Inplace Upgrade of vCenter 5.5 to vCenter 6.0, for Windows, and it works very well, as it Exports ALL the data from 5.5, and then installs vCenter Server 6.0 for Windows, and then completes an import.

In fact, I've just done one today!

Make sure you have a good backup of your vCenter Server 5.5 and also SQL database.

Existing Vcenter 5.5 U3 is running as Standard VCenter and all of the ESXi hosts 5.1 and 5.5 running with vSphere Enterprise Plus License. Can I join 3x ESXi 6.0U2 that is running as vSphere Essentials Plus to the VCenter 5.5 U3 Standard ?

No, ESXi 6.0 MUST be managed by vCenter server 6.0.
1
 
LVL 7

Author Comment

by:Senior IT System Engineer
ID: 41878535
THanks Andrew, I guess I will have to do that first and then migrate it to 6.5 VCSA.

As for mixing the ESXi with the different licensing, can I do it under the same VCenter 6.0 Standard ?
Note: The 2x ESXi 6.0 Essentials Plus will be created under the separate DRS cluster.
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LVL 22

Expert Comment

by:Luciano Patrão
ID: 41878539
Hi

There is no issues running different ESXi licenses in a vCenter.
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LVL 118
ID: 41878551
Yes, our vCenter Server has many licenses for different ESXi OS versions.

BUT do remember, if you migrate/upgrade a license in MyVMware, YOU MUST STOP using the old licenses!

e.g. if you upgrade a 5.x license to 6.0 in MyVMware, it MUST not be used and removed from vCenter Server.
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LVL 7

Author Comment

by:Senior IT System Engineer
ID: 41878570
Ok, I will upgrade the license and then join the ESXi essentials plus into the same VCenter standard as the other ESXi Enterprise Plus clusters.
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LVL 118
ID: 41878598
Ok, I will upgrade the license and then join the ESXi essentials plus into the same VCenter standard as the other ESXi Enterprise Plus clusters.

Also remember that Essentials and Essentials Plus CANNOT be used with vCenter Standard.

Essentials and Essentials Plus are effectively small business editions, which manage 3 hosts only, and only Essentials ESXi licenses can be used with vCenter Server Essentials licenses.

I think you will find you will need ESXi standard licenses to join vCenter standard.
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LVL 7

Author Comment

by:Senior IT System Engineer
ID: 41878608
Ah I see,

Is that the limitation on the Essentials edition ?

So I guess I will need to deploy it on separate DRS cluster and manage it by the VMware vSphere Essentials Plus VCenter.
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LVL 118

Accepted Solution

by:
Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE) earned 250 total points
ID: 41878642
Is that the limitation on the Essentials edition ?

Correct, it can only manage 3 hosts, and hosts can only be joined to Essentials vCenter Server. It's aimed at small business and VMware vSphere Starter Editions...

So I guess I will need to deploy it on separate DRS cluster and manage it by the VMware vSphere Essentials Plus VCenter.

correct.
1
 
LVL 7

Author Closing Comment

by:Senior IT System Engineer
ID: 41879682
Thanks people !
0
 
LVL 7

Author Comment

by:Senior IT System Engineer
ID: 41882027
Hi Andrew,

Does the VCenter 6.5 still available for Windows or not anymore
0
 
LVL 118
ID: 41882058
6.5 is to be released sometime in Q4 2016.

We will have to wait and see!
1
 
LVL 22

Expert Comment

by:Luciano Patrão
ID: 41882070
Hi,

What I have know until now, there is no more vCenter Windows 6.5 supported anymore. Also the VCSA will have the migration tool(from Windows vCenter to VCSA) included.
1
 
LVL 7

Author Comment

by:Senior IT System Engineer
ID: 41882913
Once again, many thanks to you all :-)
I will have to enjoy my last moment with Windows VCenter 6.0 on my exisiting Windows VM.
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