The vSphere Host Update Utility 4.0 is something of an overlooked utility for small business and lab environments wanting to patch or upgrade their ESX/ESXi hosts. In this basic ‘how to’ post I’m going to run through the steps in upgrading a VMware ESXi 4.0 host to ESXi 4.0 Update 1 using the utility.
The first thing I should mention is that the checking for updates and patching part of the utility is for ESXi and not ESX use, though the upgrading (eg: v3.5 –> v4.0) can be used by both versions. If you are wondering how you get a copy of the vSphere Host Update Utility, it can be installed as an option at the time of installing the vSphere client on your PC.
To start the utility navigate to the VMware folder and click on the ‘vSphere Host Update Utility 4.0’ menu item.
You’ll first be greeted with a message box asking it you want to ‘download the patches from the VMware patch repository’. Click ‘Yes’.
Press the ‘Scan for Patches’ button and enter the ESXi’ hosts logon credentials when prompted.
The vSphere Host Update Utility will now scan the ESXi host for available patches. As you can see below there are 13 available patches detected.
If you’re ready to patch the host first make sure that your ESXi host is in ‘Maintenance Mode’’ and then click ‘Patch Host’.
You’ll now be shown a separate window containing a list of the available patches along with a description of each. Take some time to read through each to ensure that you do in fact want to install them. Deselect any you don’t want to apply and then click ‘Install’.
The VMware vSphere Host Update Utility will now apply the selected patches to your ESXi host. Go and make a cup of tea as this can take at least a few minutes.
In this particular instance the ESXi host rebooted to complete the patching process (to ESXi 4.0 Update 1). When the host comes up again you will now see that it is running the latest version of ESXi.
Now what could be easier! :) Hope you found this quick ‘how to’ guide useful.