VCenter 5.0 to 5.1 U1 Upgrade while Separating or Splitting out Services (Part 4): Vcenter Service

We are now to the final piece to get the base 5.1 U1 upgrade completed.  In this first part, we need to uninstall the original inventory service and in order to do this we must uninstall the Vcenter service.  So, be sure to put in a change control or notify anyone that your Vcenter will be down during this time.   Important!  Your local accounts will not be imported into the permissions on your upgrade.  In order to use local non domain users they must be on your SSO server, but this is not the recommended method.

1. Log on to your Vcenter server.  Go to Control Panel and select Uninstall a program.


2.  Find the Vmware Vcenter Service and choose uninstall.


3.  Hit yes and uninstall the service, but don’t remove database if the option is given.


4.  Start Vcenter Installer and choose Vcenter installation or open Vcenter installer directly from its subfolder.

vc-15.  Enter your license key or choose to skip and enter it

6.  Choose use existing database and select your DSN.

vc-37.  Enter the database username and existing password


8.  The warning below will appear if you are using Vmware Update Manager which is most likely the case in most enterprises.  This just means you will not be able to use VUM until you upgrade that component. Which I recommend doing right after this upgrade.


9.  Choose to Upgrade your existing Vcenter Server Database.  Be sure to have a backup prior to continuing if you didn’t have one already!


10. Choose automatic to update the hosts with the new agent.  This should not cause any downtime, but be sure to have a Change Control in place if your enterprise requires it to cover your bases.


11.  Choose SYSTEM account or run the service under your standard.  Make sure the FQDN of your Vcenter server is correct.


12.  Take default ports or change to your needs.


13.  Set the JVM size based on your environment, but I always go larger if you feel you will grow into it over time.  This can be modified later if

13.  Enter your SSO FQDN and Username/Password that was created in part 1.


13.  You will see this warning if you have users that were local.  It will store them in the system temp folder which should be %temp%


14.  Enter your Inventory Service Server FQDN that was created in Part 3.


15.  Select the location to install Vcenter to.


16.  Wait for Vcenter install to

17.  Once complete, you are done and ready to test your login.  Load up the web client http://Vcentername:9443 and attempt to login.  If you have it correct, you should see your Vcenter listed.  If something with your SSO or login isn’t correct, you may not see your Vcenter.  Double check you have the right Domains added under the web client configuration.  You can still use the fat client if you need to get into Vcenter while you troubleshoot your Web Client/SSO.


Vcenter Installation is done!  Now you will want to go upgrade Vmware Update Manager.  It is basically the same process that we did here.  You run Vum installer and choose to upgrade your database.  The only caveat with VUM is that it only has scanning and compliance in the web client.  You must still use the VI client with 5.1 in order to create baselines and upgrade your hosts.  In future postings, I will show how to create a baseline in VUM, create your own iso, and update hosts.


VCenter 5.0 to 5.1 U1 Upgrade while Separating or Splitting out Services (Part 1): SSO Install

Upgrading to Vcenter 5.1 is definitely not as easy as the previous upgrades and finding information on exactly the best way to do it was difficult for me.  So, I hope to provide some screenshots and some advice on the issues that I have encountered.   This first part will be the SSO installation for a single site.  The multisite mode requires some extra configuration like replicating the database to your other sites and then setting up linked mode.  I hope to cover that in a later posting once I have it documented.

For my design, I split out SSO, SQL Database, and Inventory Service onto their own servers.  I kept VUM, Web Client, and Vcenter Server on the same server.  This is our lab install and we will not be doing multisite SSO for this guide.

If you need multisite SSO here is the KB article the steps , but if you select create primary node for multisite during install I don’t believe it harms anything to do it this way even if you run it stand alone.

Here is a link to the sizing requirements for each of the components.  Build out your virtual machines for the components sized for your environment.

Here is the order I have tested and been informed by VMware to do:

1. Install SSO service (seperate server for this article)
2. Install Web Client and Configure your AD sources (Vcenter server):
3. Install Inventory Service (separate server)
4. Uninstall Vcenter application to remove the old inventory
5. Install new Vcenter and point to existing database and point to SSO/new Inventory service)
6. Upgrade Vmware Update Manager / Components

Here are the links to the steps:
Web Client Upgrade
Inventory Service Upgrade
Vcenter Service Upgrade

On to part 1, Installing SSO!  For our setup we are using Windows 2008 Enterprise R2, but I believe it can run on 2012.

1. Download the Vcenter installer and copy it to your new SSO server.

2. Create your SSO SQL Database. If you are using a separate SQl server, which I highly recommend for medium to large businesses, is you need to create the new SSO database.      Log on to where your SQl server resides.

The documents can be a bit confusing and you think you might want to go ahead and create the shell, but the TableSpaces script below will actually create the database for you. The script has instructions in it on if you want to change the install path of the database name. To find the SQl scripts browse to your downloaded Vcenter install and going to the paths from the install guide below.

If you are using an existing database for Single Sign-On, you must create a database user (RSA_USER) and database administrator (RSA_DBA) to use for the Single Sign-On database installation and setup. To create these users, run the script rsaIMSLiteDBNameSetupUsers.sql. The script is included in the vCenter Server installer download package, at vCenter Server Installation directory\Single Sign On\DBScripts\SSOServer\Schema\your_existing_database..

■ If you are using an existing database with your vCenter Single Sign-On installation or upgrade, make sure that the table spaces are named RSA_DATA and RSA_INDEX. Any other table space names will cause the vCenter Single Sign-On Installation to fail.

■ If you are using an existing database for Single Sign-On, to ensure that table space is created for the database, run the script rsaIMSLiteSetupTablespaces.sql. The script is included in the vCenter Server installer download package, at vCenter Server Installation directory\Single Sign On\DBScripts\SSOServer\Schema\your_existing_database. You can run this script prior to the installation, or during the installation, when you are prompted by the installer. You can leave the installer to run the script, and resume the installer after you run the script

Modify the scripts with your username/pass and preferred database name.  Run the scripts on the SQl server to create your database instance and users.  We called our database SSO as opposed to the default RSA.

3.  Log on to your SSO server. Start up the installer, click install, choose language, and hit next




4.  Choose create the primary node for a new Vcenter Single Sign on installation


5.  Choose Basic if you will be installing this not in multisite mode or choose create the primary node if you will be doing multisite.  If you think in the future this may be part of a multisite mode I would choose this to be safe because I am not sure how easy it is to change a basic install to multisite and I don’t think it hurts to choose this option by default.  Here are the steps for multisite if you want to go that direction:


6. Enter the password you want to be for the default account to get into SSO.  BE SURE TO RECORD THIS OR YOU CANNOT GET IN SSO TO CONFIGURE IT. This is the password you will use to login to setup your domain/identity sources in the web client.


7.   Select to use an existing database and choose next.


8.  Enter all the information listed here, your database name, database server hostname, port, and DB user/DBA username which should be RSA_USER/RSA_DBA if you used the scripts.  Enter the passwords you used to create users from step 1.  Finally, enter your JDBC URL or let it auto select by unchecking the manual box.  It should be in the format jdbc://sqlserver://;databasename=DBName.  You can read more on the formats below, but the format given should work.


9.  Enter the FQDN of the current server you are installing on.


10.  I took the default for the SSPI service, but you could run it as a service account.


11.  Choose your install location and change the port if you don’t want to take default.  Hit next till it installs and SSO is installed if everything was entered correctly.

sso-11 sso-12 sso-13 sso-14

That is it! SSO is installed.  Next step will be to get the Web Client installed and configure your identity sources configured!  The web client setup will be Part 2 and I hope to get to that soon.