Installing patches on an ESXi 5.0 host from the command line
This article outlines the procedure for installing patches on an ESXi 5.0 host from the command line using esxcli software vib commands.
For more information on installing VIBs on an ESX host, see Update a Host with Individual VIBs in the vSphere 5 Documentation Center.
You can also install patches using esxcli software profile commands. For more information, see Getting Started with vSphere Command-Line Interfaces in the vSphere 5 Documentation Center.
To patch an ESXi 5.0 host using the Update Manager, see Applying Patches to Hosts in the vSphere 5 Documentation Center.
To patch an ESXi 5.0 host from the command line:
Patches for VMware products can be obtained from the VMware patch portal. Select ESXi (Embedded and Installable) in the product dropdown and click Search.
Click the Download link below the patch Release Name to download the patch to your system.
Upload the patch to a datastore on your ESXi 5.0 host using the Datastore Browser from vCenter or a direct connection to the ESXi 5.0 host using the vSphere client.
Note: VMware recommends creating a new directory on the datastore and uploading the patch file to this directory.
Log into the local Tech Support Mode console of the ESXi 5.0 host. For more information, see Using Tech Support Mode in ESXi 4.1 and ESXi 5.x (1017910).
Migrate or power off the virtual machines running on the host and put the host into maintenance mode. The host can be put into maintenance mode from the command line with:
# vim-cmd hostsvc/maintenance_mode_enter
Navigate to the directory on the datastore where the patch file was uploaded to and verify that the file exists:
# cd /vmfs/volumes/Datastore/DirectoryName # ls
Where Datastore is the datastore name where the patch file was uploaded to, and DirectoryName is the directory you created on the datastore.
Install or Update a patch on the host using these esxcli commands:
To install or update a .zip file, use the -d option. To install or update a .vib file use the -v option.
Using Install overwrites the existing packages in the system with contents of the patch you are installing, including installing new packages and removing old packages. The Install command can be used to downgrade a system. Using Update selectively overwrites existing packages that are being up-revisioned and ignores new packages. The Update command can be used to downgrade a system (only for image profiles) when the --allow-downgrade flag is set.
The install method has the possibility of overwriting existing drivers. For customers using 3rd party ESXi images it is recommend to use the "update: method to prevent an unbootable state.