When upgrading to vCenter Server 8.0, it is important to understand changes in component behavior for version 8.0 that can affect the upgrade process.
Understanding changes from previous versions of vSphere can help in your upgrade planning. For a complete list of new features in vSphere 8.0, see the Release Notes for version 8.0 releases.
vCenter Server Upgrade Methods
There are multiple methods for upgrading vCenter Server to version 8.0.
- Supported Migration Path from vCenter Server for Windows to vCenter Server
- You can migrate from an existing vCenter Server for Windows to a vCenter Server 8.0 deployment using a graphical user interface-based installer or a command-line interface-based installer. See Migrating vCenter Server for Windows to vCenter Server Appliance.
- Support for Graphical User Interface (GUI) Deployments of vCenter Server
- You can upgrade an existing vCenter Server appliance version 6.7 or 7.0 deployment to vCenter Server 8.0 using the GUI. See GUI Upgrade of the vCenter Server Appliance.
- Support for Command Line Interface (CLI) Deployments of vCenter Server Appliance
- You can upgrade an existing vCenter Server appliance version 6.7 or 7.0 deployment to vCenter Server 8.0 using the CLI. See CLI Upgrade of the vCenter Server Appliance.
- VMware Update Manager Changes
- You can use a graphical user interface (GUI) when upgrading vCenter Server deployments using VMware Update Manager.
Changes in Supported Deployment Types
Changes from previous versions of vSphere can affect your deployment type.
Mixed IPv4 and IPv6 Upgrade and Migration
- Upgrade and migration from vCenter Server 6.7 or 7.0 to 8.0 is supported for pure IPv4 or pure IPv6 management networks only.
- Using dual IP stacks (IPv4 and IPv6) is not supported.
Removal of Platform Services Controller
Beginning in vSphere 7.0, deploying or upgrading vCenter Server in vSphere 7.0 requires the use of vCenter Server appliance, a preconfigured virtual machine optimized for running vCenter Server.
The new vCenter Server contains all Platform Services Controller services, preserving the functionality and workflows, including authentication, certificate management, and licensing. It is no longer necessary nor possible to deploy and use an external Platform Services Controller. All Platform Services Controller services are consolidated into vCenter Server, and deployment and administration are simplified.
As these services are now part of vCenter Server, they are no longer described as a part of Platform Services Controller. In vSphere 7.0, the vSphere Authentication publication replaces the Platform Services Controller Administration publication. The new publication contains complete information about authentication and certificate management.
Upgrade or Migration for vCenter Server Instances with an External Platform Services Controller
When you upgrade or migrate a vCenter Server deployment using an external Platform Services Controller, you must first converge the external Platform Services Controller to an embedded Platform Services Controller and then perform the upgrade or migration.
When you converge the Platform Services Controller into a vCenter Server appliance, you must identify the management node to use for your deployment's vSphere SSO domain. In domains with multiple vCenter Server instances, you must specify the SSO replication partner to use for each subsequent vCenter Server.
The method you use to upgrade or migrate determines how you specify the management node to use for your deployment's vSphere SSO domain.
- If you upgrade or migrate using the GUI-based installer, the Upgrade wizard prompts you to specify the replication topology for the vCenter Server deployment.
To learn about upgrading using the GUI-based installer, see Upgrade a vCenter Server Appliance 6.7 or 7.0 with an External Platform Services Controller Instance by Using the GUI. To learn about migrating using the GUI-based installer, see GUI Migration of vCenter Server with an External Platform Services Controller to an Appliance.
- If you upgrade or migrate using the CLI-based installer, you specify the replication topology for the vCenter Server deployment using the JSON templates. The JSON files contain the configuration parameters and their values for your upgrade or migration specification.
To learn about upgrading using the CLI-based installer, see About Upgrading a vCenter Server with an External Platform Services Controller Using the CLI. To learn about migrating using the CLI-based installer, see About Migrating a vCenter Server for Windows with an External Platform Services Controller Using the CLI.
When the upgrade or migration process finishes, the newly deployed vCenter Server 8.0 appliance incorporates the former Platform Services Controller services. You can then decommission the external Platform Services Controller in your environment. See Decommission the Platform Services Controller.
To learn more about converging a vCenter Server deployment using an external Platform Services Controller into a vCenter Server appliance, see Knowledge Base article KB 68137.
Upgrading or Migrating to vSphere License Service
The License Service provides common license inventory and management capabilities to the vCenter Server systems. When upgrading or migrating your vCenter Server deployment, licensing data is transferred to the License Service in the vCenter Server appliance.
When upgrading vCenter Server versions 6.7 or 7.0 that are connected to a Platform Services Controller, their licensing data is transferred to the License Service in the vCenter Server appliance. The licensing data includes the available licenses and license assignments for hosts, vCenter Server systems, vSAN clusters, and other products that you use with vSphere.
After the upgrade or migration of the vCenter Server systems finishes, the License Services stores the available licenses and manages the license assignments for the entire vSphere environment.
For more information about the License Service and managing licenses in vSphere, see vCenter Server and Host Management.
Upgrading the Trust Authority vCenter Server
Upgrade the Trust Authority vCenter Server and Trust Authority Hosts.
Starting with vSphere 8.0, you can take advantage of VMware® vSphere Trust Authority™. vSphere Trust Authority is a foundational technology that enhances workload security. vSphere Trust Authority establishes a greater level of trust in your organization by associating an ESXi host's hardware root of trust to the workload itself.
The best practice for upgrading a vSphere Trust Authority infrastructure is to upgrade the Trust Authority vCenter Server and Trust Authority Hosts first. In this way, you get the most benefit from the latest vSphere Trust Authority features. However, you can perform separate, standalone upgrades of vCenter Server and ESXi hosts to fit specific business reasons. To learn about upgrading the Trust Authority Cluster vCenter Server see "vSphere Trust Authority Life Cycle" in the vSphere Security guide.
Support for Upgrading a vCenter Server with Multi-Homing
When upgrading a vCenter Server appliance with two or more network interface cards (NICs), the upgrade transfers the IP addresses from each network interface from the source vCenter Server to the target vCenter Server.
During the upgrade process, the Upgrade installer performs a pre-check of the source vCenter Server and records the network settings. When this information is transferred to the target vCenter Server appliance, the network settings are transferred as part of the configuration. When the upgrade process finishes, you can log in to the vCenter Server appliance using the vSphere ClientvSphere Client, and verify that the IP addresses have been successfully transferred to the newly upgraded vCenter Server appliance.
- Configure backup traffic to use a different network than management traffic.
- Keep ESXi hosts on a physically different LAN segment from your management traffic. You can connect one network interface to the network with your ESXi hosts, and connect the other to a network from which administrative clients connect to vCenter Server.
Support for Federal Information Processing Standard 140-2
vCenter Server 8.0 supports Federal Information Processing Standard (FIPS) 140-2.
FIPS 140-2 is a U.S. and Canadian government standard that specifies security requirements for cryptographic modules. By default, FIPS 140-2 is always activated after installation or upgrade of vCenter Server 8.0.
To learn more about support for FIPS 140-2 in VMware products, see https://www.vmware.com/security/certifications/fips.html.
To learn how to activate or deactivate FIPS 140-2 support, see the vSphere Security documentation.
Support for Transport Security Layer 1.2
By default, vSphere supports the Transport Security Layer (TLS) 1.2 encryption protocol. The upgrade or migration from earlier releases deactivates the TLS 1.0 and TLS 1.1 encryption protocols, and you might need to reconfigure other VMware products and third-party products to use TLS 1.2.
During both upgrade and migration from, a notification message informs you that only the TLS 1.2 protocol is activated. If you must use the TLS 1.0 and TLS 1.1 protocols to support products or services that do not support TLS 1.2, use the TLS Configurator Utility to activate or deactivate different TLS protocol versions. You can deactivate TLS 1.0, or you can deactivate both TLS 1.0 and TLS 1.1.
For a list of VMware products that support deactivating TLS 1.0 and TLS 1.1, see VMware Knowledge Base article 2145796. To learn how to manage TLS protocol configuration and use the TLS Configurator Utility, see the VMware Security documentation.