We are in the planning stages of upgrading our school VMWare environment by moving the VMs to a new host. Our current ESXi host is running version 6.0.0 (custom HPE image) on an HP DL360 Gen9. The new host is a Dell R650 which we plan to install 8.0b. We are not running vCenter at the schools - just a single stand-alone host.
According to the upgrade path matrix, version 6.7 is the minimum version that can be upgraded to version 8. Since we are not upgrading the actual host, can we just move/copy the VMs from the current 6.0 host to the new 8.0b host? Or do we need to upgrade the current 6.0 to at least 6.7 U3 before moving the VMs? Or should we upgrade the HP from 6.0 to 6.7 U3 and then upgrade again to 7.0 U3 (latest supported version for DL360 G9).
I understand about upgrading the hosts, but I'm not sure about the VM hardware version. Does an ESXi upgrade affect the VM hardware version?
I suggest something more practical and secure.
1. Perform a full Backup (Image) of each VM (as physical server) with Veeam Backup (Requires a PC or VM with enough disk space, where Veeam Backup Server is installed).
2. Configure the new ESXi host as a virtual structure in Veeam Backup server and perform the Instant Recovery to VMware vSphere of each VM.
Attached is a link to the Veeam Backup Community (Free) and an example of how to backup physical servers and restore them to ESXi with Veeam Backup.
The compression ratio of Veeam backup depending on your data can be 50% or more.