Get an introduced to VMFS 6 and the upgrade process. Learn how to update datastores in your virtual environment to VMFS 6.
- [Instructor] So let's look into upgrading a datastore. Now in the old days this was one of the simplest processes we had, right click, click upgrade the datastore, and you were done. You didn't have to move any data around. This was an automated process. Times have changed a little bit. Let's look at the old-school upgrades. Those of you who don't have a lot of experience with upgrading your data stores, this is what we used to do. If you were going to do a VMFS 3 to VMFS 5 upgrade, you could use the -T command, pipe dash dash upgrade VMFS and then the file path.
This was a one way process that brought you from VMFS 3 to VMFS 5. It was a process that didn't take a lot of extra work. I didn't have to move any files off of the old data stores. It was in place upgrade and in VMFS 5 even to do incremental versions was incredibly easy. We would just go to the datastore, right click on that datastore and then just choose upgrade. Now both of these processes would always be done after we had upgraded the hosts in our environment.
Hosts are not forward compatible. If you're using a much higher version on your datastore than was built to go with your version of ESXI or vSphere, you would lose connectivity so this was always the last part of the upgrade process and still is today but there is a difference now and the difference is with our new VMFS 6 file system. This brings in a lot of upgrades. It's 512e-drive compliant. We now have support for 4098 sectors or 4K and we are UNMAP supported as well.
So there are a lot of upgrades that took place and because of those upgrades, we are no longer able to do an inline upgrade. What do I mean by inline? What am I talking about here? Inline means I can just right-click on it. I don't have to take any special steps. It's not a huge difference from a prior version. I'm not gaining a lot of new features. That's not the case anymore. From VMFS 5 to VMFS 6 we're gaining a lit of functionality.
So we're no longer able to jump from 5 to 6 with all the data still on the datastore. We have to do a full upgrade process. Now when you're doing the upgrade process for your ESXI host, let's talk a little bit about the local datastore that's generated there. The local datastore also runs a VMFS version and if you're coming from any version other than 6.5 you're going to have a lower VMFS version than 5.
Here's a breakdown of what we're going to see. If you are unable to use overwrite VMFS, remember that upgrade process we had where we had install ESXI preserve VMFS, install ESXI overwrite VMFS, upgrade ESXI preserve VMFS, those were our 3 options? Well here's what happens on the local datastore side. When you choose preserve VMFS you're going to be unable to do a full upgrade.
In the last slide we said this requires us to remove all data from the datastore. When we're preserving the VMFS datastore we're not able to remove all the data there so we're unable to do a full upgrade. Because of that we will go to version 5.61. That's on the version I'm using now. As things progress it will probably get much higher than that and when you use update manager, the same is true for the local datastores attached to those ESXI hosts that you're upgrading.
The only time you can for the full VMFS 6 is when you overwrite the VMFS datastore. That option will upgrade VMFS to version 6. Here's the process to upgrade to VMFS 6. We first have to make sure that all hosts are compatible with VMFS 6. That means at least ESXI vSphere version 6.5. That's what we need from our hypervisor.
We have to also ensure that we back up all the data on the datastore. Once that data is backed up we're going to remove all data from that datastore. I do mean all the data. If you don't get all the data from that datastore you will not be able to complete the upgrade process. Remember we said, you can't do this inline. We're changing the entire structure from 5 to 6 so no data can be remaining on that LUN or target and that brings us to our last step in the datastore upgrade process.
Instead of right-clicking and pressing upgrade or doing anything else, what we're really going to do. We're going to recreate the datastore using the same LUN or target to create a new VMFS 6 datastore on that LUN.
- Manually performing ESXi host and virtual machine upgrades
- Configuring a custom download source for Update Manager
- Importing ESXi images
- Creating baselines or baseline groups
- Attaching baselines to vSphere objects
- Upgrading an ESXi host using vCenter Update Manager
- Upgrading VMware tools, VM hardware, and Update Manager
- Performing vCenter server upgrades