VMware Cloud Director Availability DRaaS Migration VMware Cloud Provider

Migration from Legacy vCenter Server Versions to the Cloud

Due to various reasons, a considerable number of organizations still rely on legacy VMware vCenter Server versions in their data centers even though they have been out of support for a long time.

The difficult and complex migration to the cloud is one of the most common reasons companies keep their critical production applications operating in out-of-date infrastructure. 

But with VMware Cloud Director Availability 4.4.1, there is now a simple migration path to the cloud for workloads operated by old vCenter Server versions. However, disaster recovery for these workloads is not possible.

Both VMware Cloud Director clouds and dedicated VMware vSphere clouds are supported as targets. 

Note: Enabling migration from legacy vCenter Server versions does NOT mean the support of these versions is extended. Supporting it is best effort, and any vCenter and ESXi bugs affecting the migration process will NOT be addressed and fixed. 

Legacy vSphere Versions

The supported versions of vCenter and ESXi for migrating using the VMware Cloud Director Availability on-premises appliances are:

  • 5.5 U3
  • 6.0 U2
  • 6.0 U3

These versions are only supported for the source site, and only the VMware Cloud Director Availability On-Premises to Cloud Director Replication and On-premises to Cloud vCenter Replication appliances can work with them. The destination cloud site must be running a supported vCenter Server version.

On-Premises and Cloud Interoperability

 On-Premises (Source)VMware Cloud Director Cloud (Target)Dedicated vSphere Cloud (Target)
Supported VMware Cloud Director Availability Versions4., 4.4.0,, 4.4.1


Since it is the same OVF template for both on-premises appliances, depending on whether the target is a VMware Cloud Director cloud or a dedicated vSphere cloud, the tenants need to choose the correct value for the deploymentOption property:

  • –deploymentOption=on_prem for VMware Cloud Director clouds
  • –deploymentOption=vc_combined for dedicated vSphere clouds

Also, the correct version of the OVFTool has to be used:

  • OVFTool 3.5.2 for vCenter 5.5 U3
  • OVFTool 4.1.0 for vCenter 6.0 U2 & U3

The full deployment instructions can be found in the documentation.


There are several limitations that you need to be aware of:

  • Legacy vSphere versions are supported only for the source site where one of the VMware Cloud Director Availability On-premises appliances needs to be deployed according to the destination cloud.
  • The VMware Cloud Director Availability vSphere Client Plug-in is not available. Only the VMware Cloud Director Availability on-premises appliance interface (on-premises) or the VMware Cloud Director Availability Management Portal (cloud) can be used.
  • Only migrations are supported. Protections are NOT supported. 
  • The workloads can be migrated only from the legacy source site to a supported cloud site. The opposite direction is NOT possible.
  • Only the Classic data engine can be used. This means migration to VMware Cloud on AWS is not possible.

Download links

VMware Cloud Director Availability 4.4.1 is available at:

Remember, to get the latest updates, check this blog regularly, you also can find us on SlackFacebookTwitterLinkedIn as well as many demo videos and enablement YouTube, especially our Feature Fridays series!


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