As we’re running the VSCA appliance we can’t use the GUI Update Manager plug-in as that only works with Windows, despite VMWare being very Linux based. So, for us, keeping the hosts up to date is a manual process from the command line.

Download the latest VMWare updates from the support site.

https://my.vmware.com/group/vmware/patch#search

Then stick them onto a volume that all the hosts have access to. For big infrequent storage we use a Synology NAS and an NFS share that is mounted on all servers.

Make sure SSH is enabled on the host you want to update, under Manage, Settings, Security Profile in VCSA.

Migrate all of your running hosts off to another and put it into maintenance mode. The non-running will get migrated by maintenance mode.

~ # esxcli software vib update -d /vmfs/volumes/SYNOLOGY/vSphere/5.5/Updates/ESXi550-201608001.zip


When you first run the esxcli command you’ll probably hold you breath for a while. Absolutely nothing happens. You’ll see no please wait, or any indication that it’s doing anything at all until it’s completed. Then you’ll get a mass of things that have been updated/installed:

Installation Result
Message: The update completed successfully, but the system needs to be rebooted for the changes to be effective.
Reboot Required: true
VIBs Installed: VMware_bootbank_ehci-ehci-hcd_1.0-3vmw.550.3.89.4179633, VMware_bootbank_esx-base_5.5.0-3.89.4179633, VMware_bootbank_misc-drivers_5.5.0-3.89.4179633, VMware_bootbank_sata-ahci_3.0-22vmw.550.3.89.4179633, VMware_bootbank_xhci-xhci_1.0-3vmw.550.3.89.4179633, VMware_locker_tools-light_5.5.0-3.89.4179633
VIBs Removed: VMware_bootbank_ehci-ehci-hcd_1.0-3vmw.550.3.78.3248547, VMware_bootbank_esx-base_5.5.0-3.84.3568722, VMware_bootbank_misc-drivers_5.5.0-3.78.3248547, VMware_bootbank_sata-ahci_3.0-22vmw.550.3.68.3029944, VMware_bootbank_xhci-xhci_1.0-3vmw.550.3.78.3248547, VMware_locker_tools-light_5.5.0-3.78.3248547
VIBs Skipped: VMware_bootbank_ata-pata-amd_0.3.10-3vmw.550.0.0.1331820, VMware_bootbank_ata-pata-atiixp_0.4.6-4vmw.550.0.0.1331820, VMware_bootbank_ata-pata-cmd64x_0.2.5-3vmw.550.0.0.1331820, VMware_bootbank_ata-pata-hpt3x2n_0.3.4-3vmw.550.0.0.1331820, VMware_bootbank_ata-pata-pdc2027x_1.0-3vmw.550.0.0.1331820, VMware_bootbank_ata-pata-serverworks_0.4.3-3vmw.550.0.0.1331820, VMware_bootbank_ata-pata-sil680_0.4.8-3vmw.550.0.0.1331820, VMware_bootbank_ata-pata-via_0.3.3-2vmw.550.0.0.1331820, VMware_bootbank_block-cciss_3.6.14-10vmw.550.0.0.1331820, VMware_bootbank_elxnet_10.2.309.6v-1vmw.550.3.68.3029944, VMware_bootbank_esx-dvfilter-generic-fastpath_5.5.0-0.0.1331820, VMware_bootbank_esx-tboot_5.5.0-2.33.2068190, VMware_bootbank_esx-ui_1.2.0-3845898, VMware_bootbank_esx-xlibs_5.5.0-0.0.1331820, VMware_bootbank_esx-xserver_5.5.0-0.0.1331820, VMware_bootbank_ima-qla4xxx_2.01.31-1vmw.550.0.0.1331820, VMware_bootbank_ipmi-ipmi-devintf_39.1-4vmw.550.0.0.1331820, VMware_bootbank_ipmi-ipmi-msghandler_39.1-4vmw.550.0.0.1331820, VMware_bootbank_ipmi-ipmi-si-drv_39.1-4vmw.550.0.0.1331820, VMware_bootbank_lpfc_10.0.100.1-1vmw.550.0.0.1331820, VMware_bootbank_lsi-mr3_0.255.03.01-2vmw.550.3.68.3029944, VMware_bootbank_lsi-msgpt3_00.255.03.03-2vmw.550.3.78.3248547, VMware_bootbank_misc-cnic-register_1.72.1.v50.1i-1vmw.550.0.0.1331820, VMware_bootbank_mtip32xx-native_3.3.4-1vmw.550.1.15.1623387, VMware_bootbank_net-be2net_4.6.100.0v-1vmw.550.0.0.1331820, VMware_bootbank_net-bnx2_2.2.3d.v55.2-1vmw.550.0.0.1331820, VMware_bootbank_net-bnx2x_1.72.56.v55.2-1vmw.550.0.0.1331820, VMware_bootbank_net-cnic_1.72.52.v55.1-1vmw.550.0.0.1331820, VMware_bootbank_net-e1000_8.0.3.1-3vmw.550.0.0.1331820, VMware_bootbank_net-e1000e_3.2.2.1-2vmw.550.3.78.3248547, VMware_bootbank_net-enic_1.4.2.15a-1vmw.550.0.0.1331820, VMware_bootbank_net-forcedeth_0.61-2vmw.550.0.0.1331820, VMware_bootbank_net-igb_5.0.5.1.1-1vmw.550.2.54.2403361, VMware_bootbank_net-ixgbe_3.7.13.7.14iov-12vmw.550.2.62.2718055, VMware_bootbank_net-mlx4-core_1.9.7.0-1vmw.550.0.0.1331820, VMware_bootbank_net-mlx4-en_1.9.7.0-1vmw.550.0.0.1331820, VMware_bootbank_net-nx-nic_5.0.621-1vmw.550.0.0.1331820, VMware_bootbank_net-tg3_3.123c.v55.5-1vmw.550.2.33.2068190, VMware_bootbank_net-vmxnet3_1.1.3.0-3vmw.550.2.39.2143827, VMware_bootbank_ohci-usb-ohci_1.0-3vmw.550.0.0.1331820, VMware_bootbank_qlnativefc_1.0.12.0-1vmw.550.0.0.1331820, VMware_bootbank_rste_2.0.2.0088-4vmw.550.1.15.1623387, VMware_bootbank_sata-ata-piix_2.12-10vmw.550.2.33.2068190, VMware_bootbank_sata-sata-nv_3.5-4vmw.550.0.0.1331820, VMware_bootbank_sata-sata-promise_2.12-3vmw.550.0.0.1331820, VMware_bootbank_sata-sata-sil24_1.1-1vmw.550.0.0.1331820, VMware_bootbank_sata-sata-sil_2.3-4vmw.550.0.0.1331820, VMware_bootbank_sata-sata-svw_2.3-3vmw.550.0.0.1331820, VMware_bootbank_scsi-aacraid_1.1.5.1-9vmw.550.0.0.1331820, VMware_bootbank_scsi-adp94xx_1.0.8.12-6vmw.550.0.0.1331820, VMware_bootbank_scsi-aic79xx_3.1-5vmw.550.0.0.1331820, VMware_bootbank_scsi-bnx2fc_1.72.53.v55.1-1vmw.550.0.0.1331820, VMware_bootbank_scsi-bnx2i_2.72.11.v55.4-1vmw.550.0.0.1331820, VMware_bootbank_scsi-fnic_1.5.0.4-1vmw.550.0.0.1331820, VMware_bootbank_scsi-hpsa_5.5.0-44vmw.550.0.0.1331820, VMware_bootbank_scsi-ips_7.12.05-4vmw.550.0.0.1331820, VMware_bootbank_scsi-lpfc820_8.2.3.1-129vmw.550.0.0.1331820, VMware_bootbank_scsi-megaraid-mbox_2.20.5.1-6vmw.550.0.0.1331820, VMware_bootbank_scsi-megaraid-sas_5.34-9vmw.550.3.68.3029944, VMware_bootbank_scsi-megaraid2_2.00.4-9vmw.550.0.0.1331820, VMware_bootbank_scsi-mpt2sas_14.00.00.00-3vmw.550.3.68.3029944, VMware_bootbank_scsi-mptsas_4.23.01.00-9vmw.550.3.68.3029944, VMware_bootbank_scsi-mptspi_4.23.01.00-9vmw.550.3.68.3029944, VMware_bootbank_scsi-qla2xxx_902.k1.1-12vmw.550.3.68.3029944, VMware_bootbank_scsi-qla4xxx_5.01.03.2-6vmw.550.0.0.1331820, VMware_bootbank_uhci-usb-uhci_1.0-3vmw.550.0.0.1331820
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