Brandon Lee has been in the IT industry 15+ years and focuses on networking & virtualization. He contributes khổng lồ the community through various blog posts & technical documentation primarily at Virtualizationhowlớn.com.
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VMware has been doing a lot of great work lớn improve the features và functionality of the vSphere Lifecycle Manager (vLCM). One of the new enhancements in vSphere 7 Update 2 relates khổng lồ the tốc độ at which vLCM can remediate ESXi hosts in a vSphere cluster. The new feature is known as vSphere Lifecycle Manager Fast Upgrades.
Overview of vLCM ^
Before we take a look at vLCM"s new Fast Upgrades feature, let"s revisit vLCM itself. Most longstanding vSphere administrators are familiar with the vSphere Update Manager (VUM), which we have long used for managing the lifecycle of ESXi hosts, including updates, upgrades, etc.
However, with the modern era of vSphere management and features, VMware has provided a new lifecycle management tool for vSphere administrators. Many of the new features & functionality found in vSphere Lifecycle Manager enable much more robust control of the new versions of vSAN và other vSphere solutions.
vLCM is a desired state, declarative sầu Mã Sản Phẩm for your ESXi hosts. vLCM allows you khổng lồ declare what you want the ESXi host khổng lồ look like, và it makes those changes happen. In addition to lớn applying VMware ESXi patches or upgrades, it also takes care of vendor tiện ích mở rộng, firmware, & drivers. So, essentially, you create the ESXi host"s image & apply that image lớn the ESXi hosts for remediation.
Using vLCM to lớn manage cluster updates
These features are especially powerful for vSAN hosts, since storage controllers và other vendor-specific hardware upgrades can be managed và performed using vLCM. It allows much more efficient maintenance windows, as all upgrades from both vSphere và OEM vendors can be completed in one fell swoop. Even with vLCM"s ability to lớn greatly reduce maintenance windows due khổng lồ adding firmware và other platsize updates, VMware saw more room for improvement by providing fast upgrades.
vLCM Fast Upgrades ^
VMware vSphere 7 Update 2 has introduced several new capabilities in vLCM. As mentioned above sầu, with vLCM, businesses can remediate hosts in a seamless and powerful way to lớn align with business priorities. When running mission-critical workloads on vSphere ESXi cluster hosts that provide CPU, memory, & storage, you want to lớn ensure those hosts are unavailable no longer than absolutely necessary.
If you ređiện thoại tư vấn, VMware introduced a relatively new feature before vSphere 7 Update 2 called Quichồng Boot, which helps minimize the downtime of production ESXi hosts. With Quichồng Boot, supported OEM vendors enable skipping the initialization of firmware and other hardware devices upon reboot. It can save a tremendous amount of time during the reboot of a server being remediated by vLCM.
In conjunction with the Quiông xã Boot feature, vSphere 7 Update 2 has introduced a feature called Fast Upgrades. With vSphere 7 Update 2 Fast Upgrades, VMware enables preserving the state of virtual machines running on a host by suspending the virtual machines in the host memory và restoring them from memory after the host remediation finishes. What problem does this solve?
When you think about conventional host remediation, virtual machines must first be migrated from the host being patched khổng lồ another host. Virtual machines with large memory assignments can require quite a bit of time khổng lồ vMotion, even with fast vMotion networks. It adds to the time needed to lớn remediate a vSphere cluster as VMs are vMotioned off và baông chồng onto each host as rolling upgrades occur on the cluster.
While this works exceptionally well & is a rock-solid process on vSphere clusters, it can require time to lớn complete. Starting with vSphere 7.0 Update 2, you can configure vLCM lớn suspend virtual machines lớn memory. It provides an additional option khổng lồ migrate them, power them off, or suspover them khổng lồ disk.
Requirements for vLCM Fast Upgrades
There are quite a few requirements lớn consider on the ESXi host as well as the virtual machines. Let"s note the requirements from each side.
ESXi hostMust be running ESXi 7.0 Update 2 or higherThe host must support Quick BootThe tăng cấp does not involve firmware upgradesvSphere Cluster hosts must be managed by the vLCM imageThe ESXi host must have sầu sufficient miễn phí memoryThe ESXi host must have enough miễn phí low memoryPer NUMA node, the host needs enough không lấy phí memory after a reboot to start properlyThe ESXi host must have enough memory reservation availableCompressed or swapped pages of virtual machines are not used by the host
Virtual machinesLatency sensitivity must not be set too highNo passthrough devices can be configuredPersistent memory is not in useEncryption cannot be enabled for the VMVMs cannot be configured with fault toleranceVirtual SGX or SEV devices cannot be configuredVMs cannot have the suspend feature disabledVMs are not a source of an Instant Clone operation
Other considerations with vLCM Fast Upgrades
In addition lớn the above sầu requirements from both the ESXi host and virtual machine perspectives, there are other considerations. These include the following:VMware"s recommends taking snapshots of VMs running business-critical workloads before you start remediation with the suspkết thúc lớn memory option enabled.There are exceptions to lớn the VMs that can be suspended lớn memory, including vSphere ESX Agent Manager (EAM) VMs, cluster service VMs, & management of virtual appliances for specific VMware solutions. These include vCenter Server, vSAN witness node, NSX-T Data Center, VMware HCX, và others.Note—Third-buổi tiệc nhỏ solutions vì get suspended, even if they are controlling critical functions in the environment.
Enabling vLCM Fast Upgrades
How vì chưng you enable the vLCM Fast Upgrades for your vSphere cluster? It involves just a couple of settings in the properties of your vLCM image settings. Navigate to lớn the Lifecycle Manager > Settings > Images > Edit screen.
Wrapping up ^
The new vLCM Fast Upgrade options give sầu vSphere administrators even more control over the amount of time it takes lớn remediate and tăng cấp their ESXi hosts running in business-critical vSphere clusters. There are quite a few requirements to note with this feature from the perspectives of both the ESXi host & the virtual machines.