When you plan an upgrade, you have two options: the system can create an upgrade plan, which includes all components, or you can create a custom upgrade plan, and select which components are upgraded.

Upgrade Coordinator creates default upgrade groups which contain objects of the same type. For example, a host cluster upgrade group contains host cluster objects. You can edit the upgrade groups to control which objects are upgraded in an upgrade session. See Manage Upgrade Groups for more information.
Table 1. Managing Which Components and Objects Are Upgraded
Component Can the component be omitted from upgrade? Can the component upgrade groups be modified? More information
NSX Controller cluster No. Upgrade is mandatory. No. All controllers are upgraded.
Host Clusters Yes Yes
Universal Routers Yes Yes Cross-vCenter NSX environments only.
NSX Edges Yes Yes Logical Distributed Routers and Edge Services Gateways.
Service VMs Yes Yes Guest Introspection Service VMs only. Partner service VMs must be upgraded separately.

If a component is included in the upgrade plan, all upgrade groups of that type must be upgraded before the next component type can be upgraded. For example, if NSX Edges are included in your upgrade plan, you must upgrade all NSX Edge upgrade groups before Service VMs can be upgraded.

An upgrade plan controls the upgrade of components and objects that are managed by a specific NSX Manager.

In a cross-vCenter NSX environment, you must create an upgrade plan for each NSX Manager to upgrade all components in the environment. Create and complete an upgrade plan for the primary NSX Manager first, including upgrading any Universal Logical Distributed Routers, before creating a plan for the secondary NSX Managers.

You can create upgrade plans for all secondary NSX Managers in a cross-vCenter NSX environment from the vCenter Server system registered with the primary NSX Manager.


  • Verify that the NSX Manager appliance has been upgraded. If you are upgrading a cross-vCenter NSX environment, you must upgrade all NSX Manager appliances before creating the upgrade plan.


  1. Navigate to Networking & Security > Installation and Upgrade > Upgrade.
  2. If you are upgrading a cross-vCenter NSX environment, select an NSX Manager from the NSX Manager drop-down menu.
    When you select a secondary NSX Manager, you are prompted to enter the NSX Manager user name and password.
  3. Review and address any warnings displayed on the components panel.
  4. Click Plan Upgrade.
  5. Select an upgrade plan:
    • To manage which components are upgraded, select Plan Your Upgrade. Follow the prompts to create an upgrade plan.
    • To upgrade everything without configuration, select One Click Upgrade.
  6. If you select Plan Your Upgrade, customize your upgrade.
    1. Select components to upgrade.
    2. Select upgrade pause options.
      You can select to pause between components, for example between the NSX Controller cluster upgrade and the host cluster upgrade. You can select to pause on errors.
    3. Follow the prompts to configure upgrade groups. See Manage Upgrade Groups for more information.
  7. Review your upgrade plan.
    • If you selected Plan Your Upgrade, your custom upgrade plan is displayed.
    • If you selected One Click Upgrade, all components are selected, and the upgrade does not pause between components, or on error.
  8. Click START UPGRADE to start the upgrade.

What to do next

View the status of the upgrade on the upgrade page. See Monitor and Troubleshoot Your Upgrade.

If you want to pause the upgrade, or modify the plan after it has started, click PAUSE. See Modify an In-Progress Upgrade Plan.

If the environment contains any objects that have not been upgraded, you can plan additional upgrades to upgrade them.

If you are upgrading a cross-vCenter NSX environment, create additional upgrade plans to upgrade components managed by other NSX Managers in the environment.