We had a plan in place for our upgrade of vCenter 4.1 to vCenter 5.0 U1, but had yet to begin and now vCenter 5.1 is out. The plan was to migrate our vCenter 4.1 SQL database from our SQL 2005 server to a SQL 2008 server and then use a new server for vCenter with Windows 2008 (currently 2003) and install vCenter 5.0 U1 on the new Windows 2008 vCenter server pointing to our migrated vCenter database on the SQL 2008 server
|Migrate vCenter database to SQL 2008 server|
|Create new vCenter Update Manager database on SQL 2008 Server|
|Disable vCenter services and shutdown vCenter server|
|Set new Windows 2008 vCenter server with same name and IP|
|Install vCenter 5.0 U1 on new Windows 2008 vCenter server to migrated vCenter 4.1 DB on SQL 2008|
|Install vCenter Update Manager 5.0 U1 on new Windows 2008 vCenter server|
Now that vCenter 5.1 is out, can we perform this same migration and follow the same steps above to go directly from vCenter 4.1 to vCenter 5.1 on the new vCenter server? Or do we first need to install vCenter 5.0 U1 on the new server / upgrading the vCenter DB to 5.0 U1 and then do an in place upgrade of vCenter 5.1 on the new vCenter server?
Also, we will not be able to use the data migration tool since we are going from a 64-bit vCenter OS to another 64-bit OS on the new vCenter server (Windows 2003 64-bit to Windows 2008 R2 64bit) and are not using SQL Express but a separate MS SQL server. I'm not sure if that means with SSO in vCenter 5.1, that we will lose all of our security settings or if the settings should still carry over during the migration and upgrade?
The datamigration script should work even for external SQL DB users. We moved from different versions of ESXi and vCenter and data migration script moved all the vCenter settings except the database to a new vCenter Server. The database you can move manually.
I would recommend and so will vmware to install a new vCenter from scratch and move settings over from the old one. You will encounter less issues if any.
Hmm, well I was looking at the kb article regarding the data migration tool and it states this:
vCenter Server 4.1.x is not supported for the data migration tool
Not sure if I can use it since we are migrating from vCenter 4.1 to 5.1.
Yes we were migrating from 4.0 to 4.1 so it is likely not for 5.x releases.
Has anyone done a migration \ upgrade yet of vCenter 4.1 to vCenter 5.1 on a new server? I've gotten conflicting responses from VMware which include that yes, we can migrate directly from vCenter 4.1 to vCenter 5.1 on a new server, and also no, that we must install the same (current) version of vCenter on the new server (vCenter 4.1) and then do an in place upgrade to vCenter 5.1 on the new vCenter server.
I'm also getting conflicting responses on whether or not the data migration tool can be used with vCenter 4.1 to migrate to vCenter 5 or 5.1. I'm seeing in the documentation that I linked above that it cannot be used on vCenter 4.1.
We've decided to start new with a clean vCenter 5.1 installation on a new server and new databases, then migrate each ESXi host from the vCenter 4.1 server to the new vCenter 5.1 server. After receiving conflicting information from VMware about how to migrate, this seems that it may be easier.
Just one more question though. There should be no interuptions to the VMs on the ESXi host when disconnecting and removing the ESXi host from one vcenter server and then importing that ESXi host on a different ESXi server, correct? I've tested removing an ESXi host containing VMs from vCenter and adding it back to the same vCenter server without any interruption to the VMs, but I just wanted to verify there should still be no interuptions to the VMs when importing the ESXi host to a new vCenter 5.1 server.
I have disconnected a Host from vCenter1 and moved it to vCenter 2 while VMs were online. Not exactly Removed the Host but no issues were seen.
I think your test is good and working as intended. Anything critical just move after hours if possible just in case.
Good idea on the clean start. I am sure you will have less issues plus you have the old vCenter just in case for any reason still running.
Thanks Bigi for your info on this. We have a separate test environment that mirrors production so we will be moving forward with the upgrade in test next week.
This is exaclty what we want to do, a fresh installation of vCenter 5.1 and move our existing 4.1 hosts and VMs to it without hundreds of down time scheduled for VMs.
Were you successful in your testing? Did you just "Disconnect" the hosts from vCenter 4.1 and acquire them (Add host) on the 5.1 vCenter?
I'd really appreciate hearing how this went.