I hope you got the chance to setup PXE Manager already if not please refer to my previous serie of articles, starting with this one: PXE Manager. After reading these you will see that I am very enthusiastic about this tool and I personally don’t think any scripted solution can do a better job. I mentioned in one of the previous articles that I would write an article about what else you can do with PXE Manager, in this article I wanted to show you that you can migrate/convert an ESX 4.0 host with “1.2″ clicks to an ESXi 4.1 host.
Following the following instructions to convert your legacy ESX hosts to ESXi 4.1:
First of all open the vSphere Client and open the PXE Manager and click to “Stateful Host” tab to activate
You will see that I have one ESXi 4.1 host (esx01) and one ESX 4.0 host (esx02), on the status of the “esx02″ host the status says “Need conversion to ESXi”. When you click on the “esx02″ host you will find in the window just below a hyperlink “Migrate this legacy VMware ESX server now”. Before clicking on the hyperlink, make sure your ESX hosts is in maintenance mode, once done go back to PXE Manager and click the hyperlink and see what happens J
This will shutdown the ESX host and remove the ESX host from vCenter, next it will pop up with the following message, click “Yes”
- This will issue a wake-up on LAN command , your ESX host will boot and the installation of ESXi 4.1 will start
- Once installed it will be joined to vCenter, the password will be changed, ….. etc, perform a reboot and your “old” ESX 4.0 host has been migrated !
The entire process takes minutes ! (If you happen to have one of these new servers with an UEFI BIOS than you are unfortunate as it will take much longer, anyway the point is that the actual installation / conversion time takes about the same time as your server that has to go through the UEFI BIOS boot process J )
So if you want to upgrade from ESX (full version) to ESXi 4.1 (and I really do hope so “for yourself” !!! ) but you struggled doing so or didn’t really know how, make your life easy and install PXE Manager !