After you migrate vCenter Server SSL certificates from a Windows Server 2003 host to a host that is supported for vCenter Server 5.5, you can install vCenter Server on the new host.

About this task

If you do not enter a license key, vCenter Server will be in evaluation mode, which allows you to use the full feature set for a 60-day evaluation period. After installation, you can enter the license key to convert vCenter Server to licensed mode.


vCenter Server 5.5 supports connection between vCenter Server and vCenter Server components by IP address only if the IP address is IPv4-compliant. To connect to a vCenter Server system in an IPv6 environment, you must use the fully qualified domain name (FQDN) or host name of the vCenter Server. The best practice is to use the FQDN, which works in all cases, instead of the IP address, which can change if assigned by DHCP.


  • Verify that the new host machine meets the requirements for the version 5.5 vCenter Inventory Service. See System Requirements.

  • Review the topics in Preparing for the Upgrade to vCenter Server.

  • To install the vCenter Server on a drive other than C:, verify that there is enough space in the C: drive to install the Microsoft Windows Installer .msi file.


  1. In the software installer directory, double-click the autorun.exe file to start the installer.
  2. Select vCenter Server and click Install.
  3. Follow the prompts in the installation wizard to choose the installer language, and agree to the end user patent and license agreements.
  4. Click Use an existing supported database and select your legacy database from the list of available DSNs. Enter the user name and password for the DSN.

    You might get a warning that the DSN points to an older version of a repository that must be upgraded. If you click Yes, the installer upgrades the database schema, making the database irreversibly incompatible with previous VirtualCenter versions.

  5. If the installer prompts you, enter the JDBC URL for your existing vCenter Server database.

    The installer should generate and validate the JDBC URL for the vCenter Server database. If the installer fails to connect to the database by using the generated JDBC URL, the installer prompts you to specify the JDBC URL.

  6. If the installer warns that the DSN points to an older version of a repository that must be upgraded, click Yes.

    The installer upgrades the database schema, making the database irreversibly incompatible with previous vCenter Server versions.

  7. Enter the administrator name and password that you use when you log in to the system on which you are installing vCenter Server.

    You need the user name and password to log in to vCenter Server after you install it.

    The Fully Qualified Domain Name text box displays the FQDN of the system that you are installing vCenter Server on. The vCenter Server installer checks that the FQDN is resolvable. If not, a warning message appears when you click Next. Change the entry to a resolvable FQDN. You must enter the FQDN, not the IP address.

  8. Select Create a standalone VMware vCenter Server instance or Join a VMware vCenter Group using Linked Mode to share information.

    Joining a Linked Mode group enables the vSphere Web Client to view, search, and manage data across multiple vCenter Server systems.


    This option does not appear if you are upgrading the VirtualCenter or vCenter Server database schema. You can join a Linked Mode group after the installation is complete.

  9. If you join a group, enter the fully qualified domain name and LDAP port number of any remote vCenter Server system.
  10. Accept or change the port numbers to connect to vCenter Server.
  11. (Optional) Select Increase the number of available ephemeral ports.
  12. Select the size of your vCenter Server inventory to allocate memory for several Java services that are used by vCenter Server.

    This setting determines the maximum JVM heap settings for VMware VirtualCenter Management Webservices (Tomcat), Inventory Service, and Profile-Driven Storage Service. You can adjust this setting after installation if the number of hosts in your environment changes. See the recommendations in the topic vCenter Server Hardware Requirements.

  13. Enter the information to register vCenter Server with vCenter Single Sign-On.

    The vCenter Single Sign-On administrator user name is administrator@vsphere.local, and the password must match the password you entered when you installed vCenter Single Sign-On. The Lookup Service URL takes the form https://SSO_host_FQDN_or_IP:7444/lookupservice/sdk, where 7444 is the default vCenter Single Sign-On HTTPS port number. Your entry should match the entry you made when you installed vCenter Single Sign-On. If you entered a different port number when you installed vCenter Single Sign-On, use that port number.


    If you installed vCenter Single Sign-On in a vCenter Server Appliance, you can enter the vCenter Single Sign-On administrator user as root@localos. In this case, the password is the root password of the vCenter Server Appliance. The Lookup Service URL takes the form https://vCenter_Appliance_IP_or_host_name:{7444}/lookupservice/sdk.

  14. If prompted to install or overwrite a certificate, follow the prompt.
  15. Register a vCenter Server administrator with vCenter Single Sign-On, and select the check box if the administrator is a group.

    The administrator or group you register here is granted the necessary privileges to administer the vCenter Server instance that you are installing.

  16. Enter the Inventory Service URL.

    The Inventory Service URL takes the form https://Inventory_Service_host_FQDN_or_IP:10443. 10443 is the default Inventory Service HTTPS port number. If you entered a different port number when you installed Inventory Service, use that port number here.

  17. Either accept the default destination folder or click Change to select another location.

    The installation path cannot contain any of the following characters: non-ASCII characters, commas (,), periods (.), exclamation points (!), pound signs (#), at signs (@), or percentage signs (%).

  18. Click Install.

    Multiple progress bars appear during the installation of the selected components.

  19. Click Finish.


vCenter Server is installed with the migrated SSL certifiicates and vCenter Server database from your Windows Server 2003 installation.

What to do next

After you complete the installation, use the vSphere Web Client to connect to vCenter Server.

Review the topics in After You Upgrade vCenter Server for other postinstallation actions you might want to take.