vCenter Server and vCenter Update Manager require databases to store and organize server data.

You do not need to install a new database for the vCenter Server installation to work. During installation, you can point the vCenter Server system to any existing supported database. vCenter Server supports IBM DB2, Oracle, and Microsoft SQL Server databases. vCenter Update Manager supports Oracle and Microsoft SQL Server databases. For a list of supported database server versions, see the vSphere Compatibility Matrixes at http://www.vmware.com/pdf/vsphere4/r40/vsp_compatibility_matrix.pdf on the VMware vSphere documentation Web site.

Caution

If you have a VirtualCenter database that you want to preserve, do not perform a fresh installation of vCenter Server. See the Upgrade Guide.

VMware recommends using separate databases for vCenter Server and vCenter Update Manager. However, for a small deployments, a separate database for vCenter Update Manager might not be necessary.

Each vCenter Server instance must have its own database. vCenter Server instances cannot share the same database schema. Multiple vCenter Server databases can reside on the same database server, or they can be separated across multiple database servers. For Oracle, which has the concept of schema objects, you can run multiple vCenter Server instances in a single database server if you have a different schema owner for each vCenter Server instance, or use a dedicated Oracle database server for each vCenter Server instance.