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Patching ESXi 8 from Update 1 to Update1C via esxcli

Download the patch file

In the VMware Portal, navigate to, select ESXi (Embedded and Installable) as the product, select 8.0 as the version, then click Search.

You will see ESXi Update 1C offered as an offline depot file (screenshot), along with the hotfixes it includes. Click Download to obtain the file.

Upload the ISO to the ESXi host

Obviously there are various locations you can upload the ISO depending on what storage the ESXi host has access to. In my case, I am using a 2nd disk attached to my ESXi host called Datastore1

Click Datastore Browser, the Upload, and you will be prompted to upload your ESXi patch file. here is my Datastore Browser showing the patch file being uploaded

Enable SSH

SSH is typically disabled by default, so we need to enable this to facilitate the upgrade. From the ESXi Web UI, navigate to Manage → Services, the scroll down and locatel TSM-SSH. Note (as per screenshot) the SSH service is currently Stopped.

To start the service, select TSM-SSH, click Actions, then click start. TSM-SSH now shows "Running"

SSH to the host using Putty or similar, click Yes to connect

Login using root and the root password

Verify the ESXi host can see the file you just uploaded

Enable Maintenance Mode

Now lets browse the different image profiles inside the offline depot file. This is done using the command below. Note that the U1C image includes both security hotfixes and bugfixes, whereas the U1SC image includes security hotfixes only. There are also images for a install (which includes tools) or a no-tools option.

Now lets apply the patch. I'm going to use the U1C image with tools, here's the full command you need to run

  • esxcli software profile update -d /vmfs/volumes/Datastore1/ -p ESXi-8.0U1c-22088125-standard

After 20-30 seconds you should see the following output. Check the first line as highlighted. It should confirm the update completed successfully, and that the sytsem needs to be rebooted for the change to take effect

The output will also confirm which VMware Installation Bundles (VIBs) were Installed, Removed or Skipped during patching.

Now simply enter the reboot command to restart the ESXi host

Once the host has rebooted, reconnect via SSH, then check the version. Here you can see the build is showing as 22088125 which if you check against the VMware ESXi build page, you can see corresponds to ESXi 8.0 Update 1C

Finally don't forget to exit Maintenance Mode. Here i confirm it is still enabled, disable it, then verify the change has taken effect

There you go guys, that's how you patch via CLI. Have fun!

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