Everyone at VMware, including myself, is so very excited about the release of vSphere 6.7. So far, demand has been high as we expected. This release focused on a broad set of new features as well as significant enhancements on top of what we put out in the market with vSphere 6.5 in late 2016.
Any new release does bring up an obvious customer question that I hear all the time: 6.5 or 6.7, as a user which should I choose?
I realize the “it depends” answer is never satisfying but it really is in this case. Even though that is the answer it doesn’t mean users should be in limbo. To me, the choice breaks into a few clearly defined steps that best align with your business and IT objectives:
- First, get educated on what vSphere 6.7 brings to the table. This is ALWAYS the best place to start. This can be done by reviewing the release notes, blogs, or the large variety of VMware events and/or resources available.
- Once you are educated on the feature set and value the 6.7 product release can provide, does this make sense in your environment? I have many customer interactions where I go through a list of features and only one really resonates with my audience but that one is a must-have feature. Is there that one or more within the vSphere 6.7 release for you or your organization?
- If the answer is no, then 6.5 may be a better path in the short term. This may be especially true for customers with long release adoption cycles that involve testing that can last months. It may also be the case for customers that are more risk averse as 6.5 has been through a few patch and update cycles already.
No matter which way a user or organization goes, it makes total sense to create an upgrade timeline. When will you upgrade? Does it make sense to skip a release? Ultimately you want a to create a plan that gives you a rough outline to follow moving forward.
This leads me to my final point. That is the end of general support coming for vSphere version 5.5 in September of 2018. For those on vSphere 5.5, you will need to come up with a plan ASAP if you haven’t done so already. You can upgrade (my best advice) or investigate extended support until you can figure out how to move forward.
Good luck as you evaluate or upgrade to vSphere 6.x. We are here to help and inform.
Sr. Director for vSphere
Cloud Platform Business Unit