Upgrade VMware


VMware enables a software-defined approach to business and IT that accelerates our customers’ digital transformation to hybrid cloud computing so they can compete and succeed in the digital economy. VMware helps enterprises deliver on all of their key business priorities and IT imperatives as they make this transition.

vSphere 6.7 provides an efficient and secure platform for your hybrid cloud through:

  • Providing comprehensive built-in security
  • Delivering simple and efficient management at scale
  • Offering a universal application platform
  • Enabling a seamless hybrid cloud

vSphere 6.7 builds on the technological innovation delivered by vSphere 6.5, and elevates the customer experience to an entirely new level. It provides exceptional management simplicity, operational efficiency, and faster time to market, all at scale.

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vSphere Upgrade Center: Top Ten Reasons to Upgrade

vSphere 6.7 Top Ten Reasons to Upgrade

Find out why customers are upgrading to vSphere 6.7.


vSphere 6.7 delivers an exceptional experience for the user with an enhanced VMware vCenter Server Appliance (vCSA). It introduces several new APIs that improve the efficiency and experience to deploy vCenter, to deploy multiple vCenters based on a template, to make management of vCenter Server Appliance significantly easier, as well as for backup and restore. It also significantly simplifies the vCenter Server topology through vCenter with embedded platform services controller in enhanced linked mode, enabling customers to link multiple vCenters and have seamless visibility across the environment without the need for an external platform services controller or load balancers.


vSphere 6.7 Update 1 release also delivers the vCenter Server Converge Tool that will help customers migrate their topology from vCenter Server with External PSC into vCenter Server with Embedded PSC, so customers can benefit from a simplified architecture with the same performance. Some key new capabilities of vSphere 6.7 Update 1 include:

  • Simple and Efficient Management, at Scale - vSphere 6.7 builds on the technological innovation delivered by vSphere 6.5, and elevates the customer experience to an entirely new level. It provides exceptional management simplicity, operational efficiency, and faster time to market, all at scale.
  • Fully Featured HTML5-based vSphere Client - Enables fast performance and easy management of connected components.
  • Comprehensive Built-In Security - vSphere 6.7 adds support for Trusted Platform Module (TPM) 2.0 hardware devices and also introduces Virtual TPM 2.0, significantly enhancing protection and assuring integrity for both the hypervisor and the guest operating system.
  • Universal Application Platform - vSphere 6.7 is a universal application platform that supports new workloads (including 3D Graphics, Big Data, HPC, Machine Learning, In-Memory, and Cloud-Native) as well as existing mission critical applications. It also supports and leverages some of the latest hardware innovations in the industry, delivering exceptional performance for a variety of workloads.
  • Seamless Hybrid Cloud Experience - vCenter Server Hybrid Linked Mode makes it simple for customers to have unified visibility and manageability across an on-premises vSphere environment running on one version and VMware Cloud on AWS, running on a different version of vSphere.

vSphere 5.5 End of General Support Reminder
If you are running vSphere 5.5, please be advised that End of General Support (EOGS) for vSphere 5.5 occurred on September 19, 2018. Read the 5.5 EOGS blog for more details.

Next Steps

  • Read the "What’s New in vSphere 6.7" Whitepaper
  • Try the vSphere 6.7 Walkthroughs

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The upgrade of your environment to VMware vSphere 6.7 is performed in a phased manner. The components that are upgraded in earlier phases are fully compatible with components whose upgrades have not yet occurred.

Phase 1: Perform the upgrade of the vCenter Server along with associated VMware Solutions

Before starting the upgrade of vCenter Server, note any other VMware solutions associated with your environment, such as Site Recovery Manager (SRM) or VMware NSX. Also, determine whether your current deployment uses an embedded or external architecture for PSC. Use the VMware Product Interoperability Matrix and review Knowledge Base article 53704 to identify versions of these solutions that are compatible with vSphere 6.7. Refer to Knowledge Base article 53710 for the sequence to use when upgrading solutions and vCenter Server (and its components).


Upgrades to vCenter Server 6.7 are supported from vCenter Server 6.0 and above. A migration tool is also available to convert your deployment from vCenter Server for Windows to the vCenter Server Appliance (VCSA). When migrating from vCenter Server for Windows to the VCSA it is important to externalize any installed VMware products like SRM or Horizon View Composer prior to beginning any migration steps. See the vSphere Upgrade Guide for more information.


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Phase 2: Upgrade your vSphere hosts to VMware ESXi 6.7

This may be done in a rolling manner, with individual hosts in a cluster successively updated after virtual machines are migrated using vSphere vMotion to the other operational hosts. A rolling approach allows you to upgrade vSphere hosts while avoiding virtual machine downtime. In-place host upgrades to ESXi version 6.7 are supported from vSphere hosts running ESXi 6.0 or later. Upgrade methods for upgrading your vSphere hosts include using the ESXi Installer, the ESXCLI command from within the ESXi Shell, vSphere Update Manager (VUM), and Auto Deploy.


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Phase 3: Install or Upgrade vRealize Log Insight for vCenter Server

The final step is to install or upgrade additional management solutions that integrate with vCenter Server and provide capabilities for monitoring and planning. Consult the product documentation for vRealize Log Insight to see how to deploy this product and refer to Knowledge Base article 2147289 for the exact sequence for upgrading this solution.


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Post-Upgrade Considerations: Complete the upgrade of your virtual machines, Distributed Switches, and datastores

vSphere 6.5 allows previous versions of VMware Tools and virtual hardware to continue running in a supported configuration on newer versions of ESXi. This extended support matrix facilitates vSphere upgrades by allowing you to immediately upgrade your vCenter Server, ESXi hosts and associated VMware solutions – followed by a phased upgrade of virtual machines. In most cases, upgrades to a virtual-machine compatibility version is required only when introducing new capabilities. VMware Tools should be updated as needed to benefit from security and reliability patches.

Virtual machines must be powered off to be upgraded. Plan appropriate outage windows for this step. You can perform an orchestrated upgrade of virtual machines with vSphere Update Manager, which allows you to upgrade both VMware Tools and virtual hardware. Refer to the vSphere compatibility matrix for more information.

vSphere environments that use distributed switches are versioned to correspond with vSphere releases. Older versions of the switch may be used safely on newer vSphere editions, but upgrading is required to benefit from enhanced capabilities or performance improvements.


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Upgrading VMware vSphere License Keys

You must obtain new licenses to deploy VMware vSphere 6.7 if you are on a version older than vSphere 6.0. Existing VMware vSphere 4.x and vSphere 5.x licenses will not work on vSphere 6.7.


Upgrade Eligibility

Licenses will be upgraded to the new version according to these rules:

  • Only licenses, or portion of licenses, that have active support and subscription contracts as of the day when VMware vSphere 6.7 becomes generally available (in the following known as "the GA date") will be eligible for upgrade. If a subscription has expired or will expire prior to the GA date you will retain access to any existing VMware vSphere licenses, but you will not be eligible to upgrade to VMware vSphere 6.7 license keys.
  • If your support and subscription has expired prior to the GA date you can choose to reinstate it later. If you do so, you will be eligible to upgrade to VMware vSphere 6.7 licenses at that time.

How to Get Your vSphere 6.7 Licenses

To upgrade a product to the new version:

  • Log into My VMware using your VMware.com account credentials.
  • Go to Accounts > License Keys. Alternatively, when you receive an alert for subscription upgrade, click Upgrade Licenses in the alert. This takes you to the License Keys page. If the alert is not appearing in the Alerts Overview, click View all Alerts to see the complete list of alerts.
  • Select Upgrade License Keys from the “I want to” dropdown. Note: If no folders or products appear, you may not have permissions to upgrade license keys on any of the folders or there may not be any license keys available for upgrade.
  • Select the folders you have access to from the folder list. All products that you are entitled to upgrade display. When you select the product you want to upgrade, you see all of the licenses for that particular product.
  • To filter the data, expand the filter and input the order number, contract number, license key, or other search criteria, and click Apply Filter. The related product that is eligible for upgrade displays in the results.
  • Enter the quantity of licenses to upgrade. You can select all or a few licenses. This number should be one or more and up to the total number of upgradeable license keys.

The system deactivates your current license for you. The new licenses are delivered in the same folder as the original license key. If any quantities of the current key remain un-upgraded, new licenses keys are generated for the remaining portion of the current product and be displayed in the confirmation process.


The ability to upgrade a license key depends on:

  • The permissions associated with the folder where the license key sits.
  • Eligibility of license entitlement for subscription upgrade (associated to the license key).
  • The date the new product version becomes available.

If you cannot upgrade, contact the Super User associated with that particular account or VMware Support.


Expected Timeframe to Receive Your vSphere License Keys

Upgrades will be available on the portal shortly after VMware vSphere 6.7 becomes generally available. All license keys with active support and subscription contracts with an end date on or after General Availability are eligible for an upgrade.


Preparing for Your License Upgrade

To ensure a problem-free license upgrade, VMware requests your cooperation in verifying that your license and subscription data are correct. Please take the time to review your account and contact Support if the information is not consistent with your expectation. If corrections are needed it is preferable to make them prior to the delivery of your VMware vSphere 6.7 licenses.

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1. Review Your Support Contracts

Go to Support Contract History under Account after logging into My VMware and, using the same login, review your support contracts. Review the status and end-dates of all contracts that contain vSphere 5.x and vCenter 5.x components. If some contracts are expired or have an end-date before the General Availability (GA) date for vSphere 6.7, you will not be eligible to upgrade your licenses to VMware vSphere 6.7 for the quantities on those contracts. To request a renewal or reinstatement of contracts, use the Request Quote button in the Support Contract Details page.


For additional questions related to licensing, contact Support.

vSphere Support Contract Screenshot

vSphere Support Contract Screenshot

2. Verify Your Role

Go to Account > User & Permissions after logging into My VMware and verify your permission on each of the folders.

The ability to upgrade a license key depends on:

  • The permissions associated with the folder where the license key sits.
  • Eligibility of license entitlement for subscription upgrade (associated to the license key).
  • The date the new product version becomes available.

On the date a new version of a product becomes available, you will receive an alert that you are entitled to the new version of your current product. (see Upgrade Eligibility above). The Super User of the account has the ability to grant and remove permissions on the folder.

User and Permissions Screenshot

User and Permissions Screenshot