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Its official, VMware released the latest version of VMware Cloud Foundation (VCF), 2.3. At the core of VCF is a fully automated, hyper-converged software stack that includes compute, storage and networking. Completing an upgrade of all of the components of an SDDC without VCF would typically take some careful planning and execution. One of the powerful features of VCF is how easy it is to complete an upgrade all of these components in a just a few clicks. In this blog, I will review the upgrade process from VCF 2.2.1 to 2.3

At the core of the upgrade process is the VCF lifecycle manager. This powerful patching and upgrade tool is exclusive to VCF. When an update to VCF is released for general availability the SDDC manager will automatically check the VMware Software repository for the latest version and notify you through the SDDC manager web interface that an update is available. Then all the required software update bundles will appear in the VCF SDDC manager web interface. Let’s walk through the process of an upgrade using the Lifecycle Manager.

Today when I login to my VCF SDDC manager web interface, I am greeted by a notice that tells me some updates are available.

Clicking on the View Updates link takes me to the Lifecycle Management web interface.

From here we can see that there are a series of seven updates required to upgrade to VCF 2.3. This is where Lifecycle Manager saves you a lot of time, usually, a VMware administrator would have to read through the release notes or KB articles to determine which product updates to install and determine the specific order to install for all of the components in the SDDC. Then some careful planning and execution of all the updates would have to take place. However, VCF takes away all of that tedious work and makes it easy by telling you which patch is required for install first. I’ll walk through the simple interface and begin the journey from VCF 2.2.1.0 to 2.3.0.0 all without causing any downtime to my application workloads.

For this release, I need to first upgrade to version 2.2.1.1.  Clicking on the first required update takes me to the Software Update web interface and also provides me more detail about the updates I’m installing.

Currently, I only have a management domain in this environment, if I had other workload domains I could select which workload domain I want to update.

Clicking next allows you schedule when you would like to complete this update. Giving you the flexibility to install the updates when you have an approved maintenance window in your environment.

After clicking next, I can review the updates and time I selected and then click schedule update.

Then sit back and relax, as the SDDC manager will automatically complete all the tasks required to install this update. When the first update in this series of 2.2.1.1 updates are completed successfully, I can then move on to the other six updates using the same steps until I am fully updated to version 2.3

As you can see from this process, updating your VMware Cloud Foundation SDDC environment is very simple and requires very little research and planning. Saving you time to work on other things.