We’ve been discussing this recently with a number of our clients currently running vSphere 5.5 so felt it was worthwhile releasing a short note with links to some useful resources as upgrade plans get started.
VMWare’s vSphere 5.5, which includes vSphere Hypervisor ESXi 5.5 and vCenter Server 5.5 will go end of general support on 19th September 2018. To maintain full support and subscription services; VMWare’s recommendation is to upgrade to vSphere 6.5 or newer version.
Technical guidance for VSphere 5.5 will be available until 19th September 2020, although this will be primarily be via the self-help portal. There will be no hardware support, server/client/guest OS updates, security patches or bug fixes unless otherwise noted.
- The recommendation is to upgrade to a new version of vSphere. Guidance is available here or alternatively we can provide upgrade assistance.
- In the event that an upgrade isnt viable before the 19th September, then you will be able to purchase extended support for the legacy version beyond that date. This can be expensive and only covers security patches and support for Severity 1 incidents and is designed to provide comfort and additional time to upgrade to a new version.
Whats new in VSphere 6.5?
- Modern user interface – HTML5- based vSphere client for better performance and ease of use
- Built in Security – vSphere encryption and encrypted vMotion protects data at rest and in motion. Secure Boot prevents hypervisor and guest operating system tampering; there are advanced audit and reporting features too.
- Proactive DC Management – Based on usage patterns, workloads are preemptively rebalanced in advance of upcoming spikes in demand. Proactive HA also anticipates hardware failure and leaverages vMotion to rederict workloads to servers in good standing before a failure occurs.
- Integrated Containers – Enterprise Container Infrastructure for developers and Ops teams.
VMWare’s official vSphere 6.5 datasheet can be found here.
If your vSphere environment is currently in support, then there should not be any additional licensing charges incurred.
Drop us a line to discuss the upgrade path in more detail if you need some assistance.