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ESX-to-ESXi Migration Key to Success? The ESX System Analyzer

As you plan your migration from ESX to ESXi, you should be pleased to learn about the ESX System Analyzer, a tool from VMware that helps you gather information about your ESX environment to ensure a successful transition to ESXi. As consultants, admins, engineers, our most valuable resource is information. Once we have all the information we need, we can design the best solutions, ESX System Analyzer collects the following information for your review, design and planning exercise.

First, it does the following to collect ESX Host Information:

  • Evaluates the hardware that ESX is installed on and determines if it is compatible with ESXi. It's an important first step: If your current hosts don't meet minimum hardware requirements, your planning and design exercise goes to procurement.
  • Spots dependencies or modifications made to the Service Console. Since with ESXi there is no Service Console where these modifications can live, it is important to know that your current environment has that dependency so that you can plan accordingly for an alternative solution. It will scan for files that have been added or removed, cronjobs, users, etc.
  • Analyzes VM datastore locations. This is an important exercise because it determines where the VMs are located and whether or not you need to migrate them off to a temporary or permanent location as you go through the upgrade.

Now for VMs, the tool collects the following data:

  • Virtual machine Virtual Hardware version. This is not a show stopper since the newer ESXi version is backward-compatible, but it is good information to know for future upgrades.
  • VMware Tools version is important, again for putting together a proper upgrade plan for these VMs and a reboot schedule for the upgrade to successfully complete.

The tool can also collect the VMFS version on the datastore; again, this is information that is useful depending on how you plan to do the migration to ESXi.

VMware is diligently facilitating the migration to ESXi by releasing tools like the ESX System Analyzer. I recommend you download it here and give it a shot.

Posted by Elias Khnaser on 12/01/2011 at 12:49 PM


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