After you perform an ESX/ESXi upgrade, VMware recommends that you upgrade all the virtual machines that reside on the host.

The first step in upgrading virtual machines is to upgrade VMware Tools. If the virtual machines do not have VMware Tools installed, you can use the VMware Tools upgrade procedure to install VMware Tools. After you install or upgrade VMware Tools, upgrade the virtual machine hardware.

VMware offers the following tools for upgrading virtual machines:

vSphere Client

Requires you to perform the virtual machine upgrade one step at a time.

vCenter Update Manager

Automates the process of upgrading and patching virtual machines, thereby ensuring that the steps occur in the correct order. You can use vCenter Update Manager to directly upgrade virtual machine hardware, VMware Tools, and virtual appliances. You can also patch and update third-party software running on the virtual machines and virtual appliances. See the vCenter Update Manager Administration Guide.


Do not use vmware-vmupgrade.exe to upgrade virtual machines.