How to update a ESXi server

All of my servers run a flavor of a virtual infrastructure. Most popular is probably the VMWare ESX and ESXi series. Especially, the ESXi offering is a freely available virtualization platform that allows you to host virtual machines hassle free.

So, with any offering there has to be some distinction between the paid offering and the free offering (unless you have open source software, hint hint) and so the ESXi platform is no exception to the game. Still it is a great offering. So, what do you have to do to upgrade to the latest release or available patches?

VMWare provides the VMware Infrastructure Client that can be run (unfortunately only) on Windows. While installing you should choose to install everything, because then there is also the VMware Infrastructure Update installed. With it, is is a breeze upgrade/update your ESXi servers.

The steps are;

  1. Choose Start > Programs > VMware > VMware Infrastructure Update.
  2. On the Hosts tab, select the ESXi hosts to check for updates.
  3. On the Updates tab, click Check Now.
  4. Install the Update. This will download the Updates and Patches. With some it takes a looooong time.
  5. Once downloaded it will prompt for you authentication and install the update.
  6. If needed, reboot the ESXi host machine.