You can create upgrade baselines for ESX/ESXi hosts with ESXi 5.1 images that you import to the Update Manager repository.

You can use ESXi .iso images to upgrade ESXi 4.x and ESXi 5.0 hosts to ESXi 5.1 or migrate ESX 4.x hosts to ESXi 5.1.

To upgrade or migrate hosts, use the ESXi installer image distributed by VMware with the name format VMware-VMvisor-Installer-5.1.0-build_number.x86_64.iso or a custom image created by using Image Builder.

Ensure that you have the Upload File privilege. For more information about managing users, groups, roles, and permissions, see vCenter Server and Host Management.

Connect the vSphere Client to a vCenter Server system with which Update Manager is registered, and on the Home page, click Update Manager under Solutions and Applications. If your vCenter Server system is part of a connected group in vCenter Linked Mode, you must specify the Update Manager instance to use, by selecting the name of the corresponding vCenter Server system in the navigation bar.


On the ESXi Images tab click Import ESXi Image on the upper-right side.


On the Select ESXi Image page of the Import ESXi Image wizard, browse to and select the ESXi image that you want to upload.


Click Next.

The upload process starts.


Do not close the import wizard. Closing the import wizard stops the upload process.


(Optional) In the Security Warning window, select an option to handle the certificate warning.

A trusted certificate authority does not sign the certificates that are generated for vCenter Server and ESX/ESXi hosts during installation. Because of this, each time an SSL connection is made to one of these systems, the client displays a warning.




Click Ignore to continue using the current SSL certificate and start the upload process.


Click Cancel to close the window and stop the upload process.

Install this certificate and do not display any security warnings

Select this check box and click Ignore to install the certificate and stop receiving security warnings.


After the file is uploaded, click Next.


(Optional) Create a host upgrade baseline.


Leave the Create a baseline using the ESXi image selected.


Specify a name, and optionally, a description for the host upgrade baseline.


Click Finish.

The ESXi image that you uploaded appears in the Imported ESXi Images pane. You can see more information about the software packages that are included in the ESXi image in the Software Packages pane.

If you also created a host upgrade baseline, the new baseline is displayed in the Baselines pane of the Baselines and Groups tab.

To upgrade or migrate the hosts in your environment, you must create a host upgrade baseline if you have not already done so.