vSphere 6.7 – EVC Activation

I’ve been meaning to fix this for a while and I just haven’t had an opportunity. I have a cluster in a remote data center comprised of some different generation of B200M4s. It’s a six node ESXi cluster currently.

* 2 Nodes use a pair of E5-2697 v4
* 4 Nodes use a pair of E5-2670 v3

I plan on turning on EVC so that VMs can move seemlessly between the nodes. I started shutting down VMs on the E5-2697s and starting them up on the E5-2670s. I am about halfway through. The plan for now, is to migrate everything over to the E5-2670s and then flip on EVC and then turn on DRS to fully automatic again. There’s one problem though and I am not sure how to navigate around it.

Currently the vCenter managing this cluster sits on the E5-2697s. In order to enable EVC, I will need to power off this vCenter and power it back up on the E5-2670 nodes, which therein lies the problem. I cannot move the vCenter if the vCenter is powered off.

I imagine the only thing I can really do is to shut down the vCenter Appliance, unregister it from the E5-2697 ESXi host, then reregister it back to one of the E5-2670 hosts. Is this correct? Is there a better way of doing this?

Thanks for any suggestions. Appreciate it.

**Edit:** I called VMware and I got 2 different methods that would officially be supported for this:

1. Power down vCenter server. Log into client tool for the ESXi server it’s currently connected to. Unregister the VM. Reregister the VM (vCenter) to an ESXi server with the lower end CPU set. Power it back on.
2. Clone the vCenter server to another ESXi host. Power down the original. Power up the new one. You would have to then of course use the client tool to do this.

2 just sounds like 1 with a lot of extra burned storage. I am probably just going to do 1 during a maintenance window.

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  1. never done what you are asking before, but my initial instinct would be to set a “virtual machine to host” rule (should run on hosts) for the VCSA to run on the host you desire.

    the rule would not be honored right now because of cpu type, but perhaps once you do a poweroff and power on, the rule will be enforced at poweron because it can now change the cpu type.

    thats what i would try anyway…

  2. ~~You can vmotion it while it is on so that you don’t have to un-register it/re-register it..~~ Scratch that I’m an idiot :). I think the method you described makes the most sense for accomplishing what you are trying to accomplish.

    It’s also possible that some of the VMs were originally started on the v3 CPUs and you only need to power-cycle some of them (including the vcenter server). I’m not sure if there is an easy way to check VM compatibility w/ a given EVC mode though. Probably trying to vmotion them to a host w/ v3 cpu is the easiest way. I imagine you’ve already done that.

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