vCenter 6 Upgrade Saga

By | December 3, 2015

I upgraded one of our first vCenters yesterday to 6, and boy was it a doozy. The vCenter was at 5.5u2D, but it has been upgraded over the years (probably starting from 3.x) so it has carried over some old crud. This post will cover all of the KBs that I had to use (be ready for a link-o-rama)



vCenter 5.5u2D on a VM with it’s SQL database on a shared sql VM


The first issue that we ran into was that the database needed extra permissions (found during upgrade check phase).

Due to some internal policies, we have to move the DB to a dedicated SQL VM prior to making this change.


The next issue was that there were some old tables and constraints that the upgrader didn’t know what to do with (found during upgrade check phase).

The solution was to run a few SQL queries to drop the constraints and old tables. After running the SQL query from the KB, there were still a few tables and constraints leftover. I modified the SQL query to drop those as well.


The upgrade checker was successful at this point, but it did state that it would need to regenerate certificates (either you do and continue or you don’t and stop).

It did let me install the WHOLE thing (including generating for new SSL certs) but at the VERY end it errored with:

VMware KB: Upgrading or installing VMware vCenter Server 6.0 fails with the vminst.log error: Error in accessing registry entry for DSN

  • Installation of Component VCSServiceManager failed with error
    code ‘1603’. Check the logs for more details.

The problem was that there was a trailing space in the ODBC DSN!!! To fix this, you need to roll back the vCenter.

Once vCenter was back up, change the DSN:

KB that states issue and how to fix ODBC DSN

KB on where to tell vCenter to use new DSN


At that point I ran the installer and it complained:

“There is a problem authenticating in to the legacy vCenter Server using the credentials provided by the user. Resolution: Check if vCenter server is up and running. Double check provided vCenter Server credentials.”

It could either mean vCenter is not up, you fat-fingered the password, or SSO is jacked-up.

In my case SSO was jacked-up, so I proceeded to re-point SSO.


During the middle of this process (after running repoint.cmd), vCenter service wouldn’t start. The problem was the ssl references in vpxd.cfg needed to be fixed.

After resolving all of the above issues, the upgrade completed.


During my validation, I noticed that I was getting the “Empty Inventory” error. I followed my own blog to resolve that.

There are still some post-upgrade tasks that I need to do (re-register SRM for example), but that can wait for another day.



4 thoughts on “vCenter 6 Upgrade Saga

  1. Pingback: Installing Win2K12 R2 on my Dell R720 | Notes from MWhite

  2. Pingback: My vSphere 6 Upgrade Experience | Notes from MWhite

  3. Pingback: Newsletter: December 5, 2015 | Notes from MWhite

  4. Pingback: My vSphere 6.0 U1b Upgrade Checklist | Notes from MWhite

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *