Upgrade path proposal/suggestions

Looking for a little feedback on my proposed upgrade path on some vcenter stuff that’s been sitting for quite a few years (2012ish).

I have 3x servers (R710) running ESXi 5.0.0, and a vcenter appliance running 5.0.0. * *vSphere Essentials License*

2 replacements (R740’s) have been procured, they are preinstalled with 6.7. from dell.
End goal is to have the 2 new servers running and keep one of the old ones doing some lower priority work and to build in some extra redundancy.

Plan A: Backup everything, install new gear, restore backups, update containers and reconfigure hosts and vcenter to match the old setup.

Plan B: Update vcenter to [6.0.0 U2](https://www.vmware.com/resources/compatibility/sim/interop_matrix.php#interop&2=&1=). Rolling updates of existing ESXi up to 6.0.0. Update Vcenter to 6.7, then migrate VM’s *with 60 day trial license* to roll in one replacement server at a time. (3 host max licensing)

Plan C: *Your better ideas go here.*

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  1. Check the HCL for those old servers – if you’re planning to keep them around, you should be aware that vCenter Server supports n-2 versions, so if those old hosts won’t meet the 6.0 HCL then you won’t be able to manage them. Also be aware that 6.0 goes EOGS in March next year (and 5.0 went that way a *looooong* time ago)


    EDIT: Looks like you’re in luck for 6.0 [https://www.vmware.com/resources/compatibility/search.php?deviceCategory=server&details=1&keyword=r710&page=1&display_interval=10&sortColumn=Partner&sortOrder=Asc](https://www.vmware.com/resources/compatibility/search.php?deviceCategory=server&details=1&keyword=r710&page=1&display_interval=10&sortColumn=Partner&sortOrder=Asc)


    Be aware that your Essentials license doesn’t include vMotion, so your VM migrations are going to need downtime.


    Also: if you want to keep one of the older hosts for redundancy then you need to enable EVC on the cluster that the hosts are going into, and this will disable some features on the newer CPUS.

  2. Your enviroment doesn’t sound to complex.

    Plan C:

    Clean install VC 6.7U3, patch new 2x host.

    Configure Networking on 2x new hosts.

    Add existing 3x(old 5.0) server to vcenter.

    Do a shared nothing vmotion between the two server. This can be done live if EVC is enabled, but not recommended as this would neuter your new hosts CPUs down to the old specs. Otherwise shut VMs down whilst migrating.

    Get Beer.

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