I have 3 vSphere 3.5 U5 embedded hosts (Dell R710 1GB SD card) currently (Managed by vCenter 4.1) and due to the SAN not being on the HCL, was unable to upgrade.
Now I have a new SAN which is on the vSphere 4 and vSphere 5 HCL's so I am looking to upgrade.
It appears the best way to do this is to basically re-install... otherwise I need to upgrade to 4, then upgrade again to 5.
I take it if I do a rolling upgrade, i.e. evict one host from the cluster, upgrade it and then put it back in... I will not lose any historical data about the VM's themselves...
But can I do something similar with the hosts?
Also what version of vSphere 5 do I actually need, does embedded still exist?
I would also suggest to reinstall the hosts because you are still running on 3.5i and I prefer a fresh approach, but you will loose the host settings and historical data. So move all VMs of host, reinstall, reconfigure and create a new Cluster
The VMs data will stay in tact as that is kept in the vCenter which you need to upgrade first if your hosts are 3.5 Update 5 (minimum version supported in vCenter 5)
Also I would install the new Hypervisor using the Dell Image build found here
This ISO image should be used only to recover/reinstall the ESXi image to SD Card/USB Key on Dell Platforms.
Just some added information you might need:
Upgrade VMware Tools. On Microsoft Windows virtual machines, if you upgrade the virtual hardware before you upgrade VMware Tools, the virtual machine might lose its network settings
But here is a link I found that could help you with the whole upgrade process and decisions
Please award points for correct/helpful answers :smileycool: