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Migrating old ESXi 4.1 to ESXi 6.0

Posted on 2016-11-17
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Last Modified: 2016-11-20
I have an old ESXi 4.1 host connected to a Drobo SAN using iSCSI.  It's hosting two servers totaling about 700GB.  Would it be easier to take one of my existing ESXi 6 hosts and connect it to the Drobo SAN (so ti sees the new SAN and the old Drobo SAN), drop the guest server from ESXi 4's inventory and add it to the ESXi 6 host then migrate (move)?  Any other alternatives or suggestions?  I have done this way prior but just wondering if there is a quicker way.
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Question by:chilemoore
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by:Andy
Andy earned 250 total points
ID: 41891183
You suggestion is one way,

You could also try exporting the VM's on the old host then import them into the new hosts.
Or use vmware converter to move them.

Or, upgrade your 4.12 to 5.5 using eval license and add it to the 6 environment (if running vCenter)
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Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE^2) earned 250 total points
ID: 41891201
I have an old ESXi 4.1 host connected to a Drobo SAN using iSCSI.  It's hosting two servers totaling about 700GB.  Would it be easier to take one of my existing ESXi 6 hosts and connect it to the Drobo SAN (so ti sees the new SAN and the old Drobo SAN), drop the guest server from ESXi 4's inventory and add it to the ESXi 6 host then migrate (move)?  Any other alternatives or suggestions?  I have done this way prior but just wondering if there is a quicker way.

Yes, provided ESXi 6.0 can be connected and is compatible with ESXi 6.0, this is the quickest method of migration.

Turn off old ESXi 4.1 servers, disconnect from SAN, add IP Address of SAN to ESXi 6.0 - rescan iSCSI Software Initiator and the VMFS datastores should appear.

and then Register the VMs with the ESXi 6.0 inventory, see step 6 in my EE Article here

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

If you are going to scrap the drobo, then click VM, Right Click Migrate, and MIgrate to new datastore.

Remove IP Address of drobo SAN, and turn off.

Done.

No need to Export/Import, as you already have the VM on shared storage.

So in Summary, depends if the Drobo unit, is compatible with ESXi 6.0, otherwise I have some other ideas for you, see my EE Articles

Part 10: HOW TO: Backup (Export) and Restore (Import) virtual machines to VMware vSphere Hypervisor 5.1 for FREE

(works with all versions of ESXi, this is slow!).

Part 13: HOW TO: Shrink or Reduce a VMware Virtual Machine Disk (VMDK) using VMware vCenter Converter Standalone v5.5.2

HOW TO:  P2V, V2V for FREE - VMware vCenter Converter Standalone 6.1
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