Safely uninstall VCSA 6.5U1 in readiness for a fresh installation?

I've had a good ol' Google and I can't see any articles on how to completely uninstall VCSA 6.5U1 to allow for a completely clean, fresh install.

Anyone got any pointers please?

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VMware Employee
VMware Employee


So correct me if I got this right you are looking to completely remove the VCSA and then do a reinstall? If this is what you are planning to do, it is important to understand where is the database because modifying the VCSA will lead to scenarios such as :

1) If it's an internal database you will need to migrate this prior to doing anything else you may end up losing data

2) If its an external database and since the clusters, switches etc are from the vCenter you will need to rebuild everything.

For migration of the database, you can refer to Using dbmigrate to migrate from PostgreSQL to MySQL in VMware vFabric Hyperic Server (1030259) | VMw...

Sincerely, Rahul Parmar VMware Support Moderator
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One avenue to look at is the built-in VCSA backup tool in 6.5.  This will allow you to take a full backup of the settings, configuration and the database elements within the appliance.  If you then wish to deploy a fresh one, you then have the ability to restore all of the settings etc back into the new appliance.

Of course, there's other points to consider:

  • Is this a VCSA with embedded Platform Service Controller?  If it is, then it's a lot less painful.
  • What is this vCenter managing?
    • If it's got nothing in there, just access the UI on the ESXI host ( Https://(FQDN of ESXi host)/ui ) then bin the VM from the host (or just shut it down) and re-deploy.
    • If it's a simple vSphere cluster and you want to go completely fresh, I'd disable HA and DRS, unregister the ESXi hosts, then do the above.
    • If you've got vSAN or other dependent components, it's a more complicated affair - the backup/restore above might be better.  Tread carefully.

Hope that helps 🙂

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