You can update hosts with VIBs or image profiles by downloading a ZIP file of a depot.

VMware partners prepare third-party VIBs to provide management agents or asynchronously released drivers.

Important: If you are updating ESXi from a zip bundle in a VMware-supplied depot, either online from the VMware Web site or downloaded locally, VMware supports only the update method specified for VMware-supplied depots in the topic Upgrade or Update a Host with Image Profiles.

The esxcli software vib update and esxcli software vib install commands are not supported for upgrade operations. See Upgrade or Update a Host with Image Profiles.

When you specify a target server by using --server=<server_name>, the server prompts you for a user name and password. Other connection options, such as a configuration file or session file, are supported. For a list of connection options, see Getting Started with ESXCLI, or run esxcli --help at the ESXCLI command prompt.


  • Install ESXCLI. See Getting Started with ESXCLI. For troubleshooting, run esxcli commands in the ESXi Shell.

  • Download the ZIP file of a depot bundle from a third-party VMware partner.
  • Determine whether the update requires the host to be in maintenance mode or to be rebooted. If necessary, place the host in maintenance mode.

    See Determine Whether an Update Requires a Host to Be in Maintenance Mode or to Be Rebooted. See Place a Host in Maintenance Mode.

  • If the update requires a reboot, and if the host belongs to a vSphere HA cluster, remove the host from the cluster or deactivate HA on the cluster.


  • Install the ZIP file.
    esxcli --server=<server_name> software vib update --depot=/<path_to_vib_ZIP>/<ZIP_file_name>.zip