A Simple Way to Upgrade Your Standalone or Clustered ESXi Servers

Important Note - update your VCSA before your ESXi Servers!

  1. Open an SSH session to your ESXi server

  2. Put your system into Maintenance Mode and allow the VMs to migrate or suspend

     esxcli system maintenanceMode set --enable true
  3. Show available images from the VMware update server and select the one you require

     esxcli software sources profile list -d https://hostupdate.vmware.com/software/VUM/PRODUCTION/main/vmw-depot-index.xml | sort -r
  4. The following line will enable http connections through the ESXi server firewall to allow the update to take place

     esxcli network firewall ruleset set -e true -r httpClient
  5. Run the following command in the SSH session, replacing ESXi-6.0.0-20161104001-standard with the update package you require from step 3. This may take a while depending on download speed etc.

     esxcli software profile update -p ESXi-6.0.0-20161104001-standard -d https://hostupdate.vmware.com/software/VUM/PRODUCTION/main/vmw-depot-index.xml
  6. Once complete, we can re-enable the firewall

     esxcli network firewall ruleset set -e false -r httpClient
  7. Reboot your ESXi server with the reboot command

  8. Once your server comes back up, we can now disable Maintenance Mode.

     esxcli system maintenanceMode set --enable true

Once complete, all you VMs should redistribute themselves (if you are running a DRS cluster) or resume and you can continue to upgrade the remaining hosts within your cluster.