vCenter Server Appliance Convergence using the vSphere Client

vSphere 6.7 U1 saw a CLI based version of the vCenter Server Appliance convergence tool. In vSphere 6.7 U2 we now have all that great functionality built right into the vSphere Client. If you are currently running with external Platform Services Controllers, now has never been a better or easier time to move to embedded.

Please check out the documentation here.

Start by navigating to Administration > System Configuration where you will find an enhanced System Configuration view compared to previous versions.

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This enhanced view not only allows you to perform convergence and decommission tasks, but it also allows you to see what external Platform Services Controller a particular vCenter Server Appliance is using, as well as, the replication partners of a particular Platform Services Controller.

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There are just a few prerequisites before kicking off a convergence using the vSphere Client

From System Configuration you can now perform convergence by selecting a vCenter Server Appliance you wish to converge and selecting Converge to Embedded

Next, provide the Single Sign-on administrator credentials, optionally join Active Directory, acknowledge that you have backed up the vCenter Server Appliance and click Converge.

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If you have only a single vCenter Server Appliance and you are converging that vCenter Server Appliance, you will lose access to the vSphere Client as the services restart as part of the process but don’t worry, that won’t interrupt the underlying convergence process.

Tip: Monitor the /var/log/vmware/converge/converge.log log file on the vCenter Server Appliance

If you have vCenter Server Appliances in Enhanced Linked Mode, it is best to log into a vSphere Client from a different vCenter Server Appliance and not use the vSphere Client hosted by the vCenter Server Appliance you are currently converging. That way, you will keep your vSphere Client session and be able to monitor the process in the UI.

Your first vCenter Server Appliance that is converged will automatically create a replication agreement to its previous external Platform Services Controller.

Your second converged vCenter Server Appliance will create a replication agreement to the previously converged vCenter Server Appliance (with embedded Platform Services Controller).

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Your third and subsequent converged vCenter Server Appliances will allow you to choose which of the previously converged nodes you wish to form the replication agreement with.

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This is to ensure that you cannot end up in a situation where, post-convergence and decommission of the external Platform Services Controllers, your vCenter Server Appliances are not accidentally isolated from each other.

Once you have completed the convergence of all your vCenter Server Appliances, you can next begin to decommission those now defunct external Platform Services Controllers.

Just select the external Platform Services Controllers from the System Configuration view and select Decommission.

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A couple of points about decommissioning:

  • If your PSCs are Windows based, you will have to manually shut them down as the UI uses an Appliance API to perform a shutdown for you.
  • Decommissioning a PSC will require a restart of the services of the vCenter Server you are currently logged into.
  • If you have other products (NSX, SRM, etc) that have been configured to interface with any of the external PSCs then you will need to reconfigure these products to interface with the new embedded PSCs.

One all external Platform Services Controllers have been decommissioned you should be left with your embedded vCenter Server Appliance nodes.

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That’s it for an overview of vCenter Server Appliance Convergence using the vSphere Client. Keep a look out soon for posts where I will walkthrough the process in a step-by-step manner.

Happy Converging!