1 Reply Latest reply on May 30, 2019 5:12 PM by daphnissov

    Clusters with mixed ESXi versions: "officially supported" vs "discouraged?"

    rm_bk Novice
      • Some people say it's fine, period.
      • Some people say it's fine only in the short term (i.e during rolling upgrades).
      • Some people say it's strongly discouraged and you really shouldn't do it at all.


      What's the official word from VMware on this?  If we have a problem and we open a support case, will we be advised to move away from this setup?  Have they published any guidance here?


      What's the real world experience?  Has anyone had a support case that could be definitively blamed on their mixed version clusters?

        • 1. Re: Clusters with mixed ESXi versions: "officially supported" vs "discouraged?"
          daphnissov Guru
          Community WarriorsvExpert

          Some people say it's fine, period.

          I know of no one who would say categorically that "it's fine" without some caveats.


          I don't know what the "official" support stance is from VMware, but I will give you some real-world advice and also a personal recommendation.


          Mixing builds within the same release is mostly ok with there being some serious caveats:

          • feature sets change
          • security implications may differ
          • advanced settings are shifted with some introduced


          Mixed clusters across different releases (i.e., a cluster containing 6.0 and 6.5 hosts) is a mistake and should absolutely be avoided. Caveats are as above but more severe.


          My personal recommendation:  Always, always strive to keep build numbers consistent within a cluster unless you have an extremely compelling reason. Laziness or not wanting to update your clusters is not a good reason, btw. Clusters across releases should be strictly avoided.


          So what you need to ask yourself is this:  Why am I wanting to have a heterogeneous cluster? You need a very good reason.

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