VCF upgrade prerequisites

VMware vSphere Lifecycle Management (vLCM) is the source of information for VCF upgrades and procedures. Meet all the upgrade prerequisites that are identified in the VCF Lifecycle Management Guide in addition to VxBlock System prerequisites.

Go to VMware Docs and download VMware Cloud Foundation Lifecycle Management for the VCF version running on your VxBlock System. VMware Cloud Foundation Lifecycle Management identifies whether skip level upgrades are supported and the supported preupgrade versions.

Perform the following steps before upgrading VCF:

  • If VMware vRealize Suite Lifecycle Manager and vRealize Suite products are used, coordinate the upgrade with VMware Professional Services.
  • Back up the management domain and VI workload domains.
  • Download and review the VCF upgrade target version release notes and FAQs:
    • Examine the known issues section and identify any items that could impact the upgrade.
    • Note which BOM components are in the upgrade.
    • Note which VMware vRealize components are interoperable.
    • Note the Upgrading to section to identify the supported starting VCF releases for the upgrade.
  • Verify the VCF upgrade target version is on the VCF RCM.
  • Ensure that VMware SDDC Manager, VMware NSX-T Data Center, VMware vCenter, and VMware ESXi passwords do not expire during the upgrade.
  • Document the existing management domain and VI workload domain VMware ESXi driver versions and PowerPath VIBs:
    • On the left menu of VMware SDDC Manager, select Inventory > VI workload domains > Domain.
    • Select the domain > Update/Patches and scroll down to Current Versions. Continue to the VMware ESXi host version and select Third-Party Custom VIBs.
    • For the management domain, document the nenic, fnic, and ixgben drivers.
    • For the VI workload domain edge and compute servers, document the nenic, fnic, and i40en drivers along with the PowerPath VIB version.
  • Enable the VMware SDDC Manager Repository to identify and download available upgrade components. Only download components based on Dell Technologies VCF RCM.
  • VMware SDDC Manager requires Internet access to download the VCF upgrade version BOM components. Depending on the VCF target upgrade version, the BOM may include may or may not include all the constituent VCF components. Complete VCF bundle downloads before a maintenance window.
  • If the VCF upgrade target version includes a new VMware ESXi build, verify that the RCM includes a corresponding Dell Technologies custom ISO. The management domains on AMP Central servers have their own Dell Technologies custom ISO, while the VI workload domain edge and compute hosts share a common Dell Technologies custom ISO.
  • Verify that all hosts in a VCF managed cluster are available. As part of the VCF upgrade precheck, VMware SDDC Manager verifies that each host can be placed into maintenance mode.
  • Verify the operational status of all VMware vSphere components that VCF manages to resolve any errors or alarms. If an alarm is cleared without resolving the underlying issue, VMware SDDC Manager upgrade prechecks may still prevent an upgrade.
  • On VMware SDDC Manager, run the precheck scripts for the management domain and VI workload domains. Resolve any errors resulting in a Failed Status before proceeding with the upgrade. Resolve all issues before a maintenance window.