Migrating to ESXi: How To

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1 ILTA Webinar Session Migrating to ESXi: How To Strategies, Procedures & Precautions Server Operations and Security Technology Speaker: Christopher Janoch December 29, 2010

2 Migrating to ESXi: How To Strategies, Procedures & Precautions Christopher Janoch

3 Speaker Bio Christopher Janoch Sr. Virtualization Engineer at ivision Contact Info: #cjanoch ivision, Inc. Page 3

4 Why Migrate to ESXi? ivision, Inc. Page 4

5 VMware s Big Announcement VMware vsphere 4.1 and its subsequent update and patch releases are the last releases to include both ESX and ESXi hypervisor architectures. Future major releases of VMware vsphere will include only the VMware ESXi architecture. VMware vsphere 4.1 Release Notes ESX Edition, July 13 th, 2010 VMware recommends that customers start transitioning to the ESXi architecture when deploying VMware vsphere 4.1 VMware will continue to provide technical support for VMware ESX according to the VMware vsphere support policy ivision, Inc. Page 5

6 ESXi Advantages and Improvements Better Reliability and Security - ESXi has fewer security vulnerabilities Faster to Deploy - The installation is easier to script and automate Tighter Control over the VMkernal - No arbitrary code or 3 rd party agents in core operating system Lower Development Costs - Only one version of the platform simplifies development and testing ivision, Inc. Page 6

7 vsphere ESXi Licensing Options ivision, Inc. Page 7

8 The ESXi Upgrade Path

9 Preparation for Migration ivision, Inc. Page 9

10 ESXi 4.1 Requirements Verify Hardware Compatibility Guide VMware ESXi 4.1 will only install on servers with 64-bit x86 CPUs - All AMD Opterons CPUs support 64-bit - All Intel Nehalem CPUs support 64-bit - Most Intel Xeon CPUs support 64-bit 3000/3200, 3100/3300, 5100/5300, 5200/5400, 7100/7300, 7200/7400 2GB RAM minimum / 3GB if vcenter Managed 5GB of Storage Space (1GB Core Components + 4GB Swap) - DAS, Flash Drive, Boot From SAN One or More Gigabit Ethernet Controllers ivision, Inc. Page 10

11 Management Requirements There is no Service Console - Management tools and processes have changed RemoteCLI, PowerShell, VMA - Learn new systems and procedures *before* migrating systems. The ESXi Firewall/Security Profile is configured differently - Only minimal allowances remain vcenter Management, VUM, NTP Services - 3 rd Party Applications should use vshield Zones 3 rd Party Tools must use remote APIs Backup Agents, Hardware Monitoring Agents (DELL, HP), Reporting Tools Upgrade Management Servers and Services First - vcenter, vappliances, Monitoring and Backup Tools Convert any 3.x VMware licenses to 4.1 ivision, Inc. Page 11

12 Migration Considerations An ESXi migration is NOT an upgrade or conversion It really is a rebuild: - Local VMFS drives are erased and re-formatted - Networking settings need to be re-created - Security settings reset to default All host-specific settings are lost during an ESXi installation! ivision, Inc. Page 12

13 Migration Preparations All VMs must be moved off Local Storage - In a clustered environment use Storage vmotion - In a managed environment use cold migrations - In a stand-alone environment use SSH copy or VMware Converter Backup or Document all Critical Settings - vswitch and vmnic Configurations - Security Settings and Local Accounts - DNS and Routing Settings - Time Settings - Power Management Settings ivision, Inc. Page 13

14 Tools for Backing up ESX/ESXi Settings Tools for Backing up & Restoring Host Configurations - vcenter 4.1 Host Profiles (vsphere 4.0 and higher) - vcenter 4.1 Distributed Switches (vsphere 4.0 and higher) - Veeam Reporter by Veeam Software - vprofile Configuration Management by Reflex Systems vma /vcli / PowerShell Scripts - vicfg-cfgbackup.pl (vma or vsphere CLI) - ghettohostbackupmanagement.pl by William Lam ivision, Inc. Page 14

15 Installing ESXi ivision, Inc. Page 15

16 Installation Strategies Manual Installation Methods - Use the Interactive Mode from the ESXi 4.1 CD/DVD to install the OS onto local SAS, SATA, or SCSI drive - Run a Scripted or KickStart Installation from either a local Boot CD or a PXE environment Automatic Installation Methods - Use VMware Update Manager (Preserves Settings!) - Boot from SAN (FC, iscsi, and FCoIP) - Use stand-alone VMware tools for a non-managed environment 1. VMware Infrastructure Update Utility (Upgrades ESXi 3.x to 3.5) 2. VMware Host Update Utility (Upgrades ESXi 3.x to ESXi 4.0) 3. rcli command: vihostupdate (Upgrades ESXi 4.0 to ESXi 4.1) ivision, Inc. Page 16

17 Manual Upgrade Procedures ivision, Inc. Page 17

18 Manual Interactive Mode Procedure Pre-Installation Steps 1. Remove host from vsphere managed cluster and datacenter 2. Disconnect FC-attached SAN to avoid accidental LUN re-formatting 3. Verify the Server Hardware Clock is set to UTC 4. Verify that keyboard and mouse are attached to host server 5. ESXi Embedded must be removed (if present). Interactive Mode Installation 1. Insert ESXi 4.1 installable CD/DVD into the local CD/DVD-ROM drive Alternate: Use ilo or DRAC to mount ISO to virtual bootable drive 2. Set BIOS to boot from CD/DVD-ROM 3. Restart Machine to boot from CD/DVD and begin installation wizard ivision, Inc. Page 18

19 Manual Scripted Mode Procedure Scripted Mode Advantages - It allows you to rapidly deploy ESXi to multiple machines - Configurations can be duplicated to multiple ESXi hosts with minimal manual intervention - Modifying an ESXi configuration is easier and faster because you need to modify only the script file - You can boot the scripted installation with a CD-ROM drive or over the network using PXE booting - It supports scripted installations of ESXi to local and remote disks - All configuration directives initiated by the installation script are logged in the /var/log/weasel.log file of the ESXi host, which helps in troubleshooting deployment issues ivision, Inc. Page 19

20 Manual Scripted Mode Procedure Scripted Mode Installation 1. Create a script using the supported commands 2. Edit the installation script as needed to change settings unique for each host to be installed IP Address, Host Name, etc. 3. Run the scripted installation form one of the following locations: Default installation script PXE FTP, HTTP, or HTTPS server NFS Share USB Flash Drive, CD/DVD Rom For detailed Script settings and examples refer to: ivision, Inc. Page 20

21 Automatic Upgrade Procedures ivision, Inc. Page 21

22 Automatic Installation Procedures VMware Update Manager (vcenter 4.1) 1. Upgrade vcenter to version 4.1 before proceeding! 2. Install and configure VMware Update Manager 3. Download the ESXi 3.5 to ESXi 4.1 Update bundle (.ZIP), and register it in the Update Manager administration view 4. Create a Host Upgrade Baseline 5. Attach the Host Upgrade Baseline to the managed host or cluster to be upgraded 6. Place the host to be upgraded into Maintenance Mode to evacuate any active VMs. Shutdown or cold migrate any VMs that cannot vmotion off of the host 7. Scan the host for Upgrade baseline compliance, and then Remediate to update the host. ivision, Inc. Page 22

23 Stand-Alone Tools Upgrade Procedure Upgrade ESXi 3.5 to ESXi Download and install the VMware vsphere 4.0 client. Select the option to install the vsphere Host Update Utility. 2. When you start the Utility, you will be prompted to download patches from VMware. You can also manually check for update patches selecting File Download Patches option. 3. If the ESXi 3.5 host is not listed, you can manually enter it by selecting Host Add and entering the FQDN name of the host. 4. Stop all VMs on the host, and ensure that the host is in Maintenance Mode. 5. Select your host and then click on upgrade. The upgrade wizard will start and you may have to select an upgrade ZIP package. 6. After the package is Validated, user credentials entered, and the host passes a Compatibility Check, the upgrade will begin. ivision, Inc. Page 23

24 Stand-Alone Tools Upgrade Procedure Upgrade ESXi 4.0 to ESXi Download and install the vsphere CLI 4.1 package from the VMware site to allow for remote management of the ESXi hypervisor VMware vsphere Command -Line Interface Windows Installer VMware vsphere Command -Line Interface Linux Installer VMware Management Appliance (vma) 2. Stop all VMs on the host, and ensure that the host is in Maintenance Mode. 3. Open the CLI command prompt and use the vihostupdate.pl command to begin the ESXi upgrade process vihostupdate.pl --server install --bundle c:\path\upgrade-from-esxi~.zip 4. Verify that the upgrade has run successfully by using the vihostupdate.pl command to run a query vihostupdate.pl --server query ivision, Inc. Page 24

25 Reconfiguring System Settings ivision, Inc. Page 25

26 System Reconfiguration Restore Host Settings - If using one of the Manual Upgrade methods, or the Stand-Alone tools method, you will need to restore the system settings that you documented in the first step of the process. - If you are upgrading a number of ESXi servers, you can use the vcenter Server 4.1 Host Profiles option to save the settings from the first, manually re-configured ESXi 4.1 host and apply them to every additional upgraded ESXi 4.1 Server ivision, Inc. Page 26

27 Virtual Machine Updates Update VMware Tools on all of the Virtual Guest Servers - Upgrades to the latest drivers for the virtual hardware - Updates the memory control driver for better integration with the ESXi 4.1 hypervisor - Upgrades can be automated using VMware Update Manager - Updates require a reboot of the guest server Update Virtual Hardware version on Guest Servers - Adds the latest functionality to the virtual servers - Once updated, the VM will no longer operate on pre-4.1 hosts - Upgrades can be automated using VMware Update Manager - Updates require a reboot of the guest server ivision, Inc. Page 27

28 Sample ESXi Installation Demonstrations ivision, Inc. Page 28

29 Upcoming ILTA Webinar Sessions Look Ahead for More Information: Managing ESXi The Missing Console Tools and Techniques for Managing and Trouble-shooting ESXi Late January Contact Info: #cjanoch

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