You can automatically upgrade the Supervisor Cluster when you upgrade the vCenter Server Appliance.

vSphere with Tanzu components include components in the vCenter Server, Kubernetes components, and ESXi components. When you upgrade vCenter Server, only the vSphere with Tanzu components on the vCenter Server are upgraded. You must manually upgrade the Kubernetes components, and ESXi components.

With the auto upgrade feature, when you upgrade vCenter Server, you can automatically upgrade the Supervisor Cluster. For a list of vCenter Server releases, see the following KB article: https://kb.vmware.com/s/article/2143838.

When you upgrade the vCenter Server, prechecks are run to check the compatibility between the versions of the Supervisor Cluster and vCenter Server. Warnings are displayed in the following scenarios:
  • The target vCenter Server has a version of Kubernetes that can make the Supervisor Cluster fall behind by one version. In this scenario, when you proceed with vCenter Server upgrade, the cluster is automatically upgraded.

    For example, the Supervisor Cluster version is 1.16 and the target vCenter Server version is 1.17, 1.18, or 1.19.

  • The target vCenter Server has a version of Kubernetes that makes the Supervisor Cluster fall behind by more than one version. In this scenario, the vCenter Server is not upgraded.

    For example, the Supervisor Cluster version is 1.15 and the target vCenter Server version is 1.17, 1.18, or 1.19.

  • The Supervisor Cluster license has expired. In this scenario, if you proceed with the vCenter Server upgrade, the Supervisor Cluster with the expired license becomes unusable and unrecoverable.