vRealize Automation has had a different upgrade process for about every version that I can think of. The upgrade from vRA 7.1 to 7.2 is no exception, but this time you can see that some good things are happening to this process. There are fewer manual steps to do to make sure the upgrade goes smoothly and a script is now used to upgrade the IaaS Components which is a nice change from the older methods. As with any upgrade, you should read all of the instructions in the official documentation before proceeding.
To start your vRA 7.1 to 7.2 upgrade, grab a snapshot of the vRA appliance, IaaS Server(s) and a SQL database backup. Yeah, the new process is much easier to handle, but there is no excuse for not taking a backup (just in case). Once the backups are secured, login to the VAMI interface of your vRA appliance at: https://vRA_APPLIANCE.DOMAIN.LOCAL:5480. Once logged in as the root user, go to the Update tab and click “Check Updates”. In a moment the interface should show a new version available and then you can click “Install Updates”.
This next part is important. BE PATIENT!!!!!
The Upgrade process will run in the background and may take quite a long time. My upgrade took about 45 minutes to complete and I thought that my browser had stopped refreshing. If you want to keep up with exactly what’s happening you can monitor the /opt/vmware/var/log/vami/updatecli.log file on the vRA appliance.
Eventually, you’ll get a message stating that the appliance has been updated successfully. At this point, you can reboot the vRA appliance.
Once the vRA appliance has been upgraded and restarted, check to make sure that all of the services show “REGISTERED” again. This may take a few moments.
Once the vRA appliance is upgraded, SSH into the appliance and navigate to the /usr/lib/vcac/tools/upgrade directory. From here run ./generate_properties which will create a properties file in the same directory. Open this file with your favorite editor such as VI.
The properties file will want to know some information about the IaaS component servers. You’ll need service account information for the web services and DEMs. Enter in the information and save the file.
NOTE: You might think this is pretty insecure to keep a file with passwords on it stored in the vRA appliance. You’re probably right, but the next stage will delete this file when it’s done running.
Once you’ve saved the file run ./upgrade to begin the upgrade process. You should see something similar to the output listed below.
The upgrade process is certainly getting better for vRA and I look forward to what is in store next from VMware. You might be wondering what happens to the vRO instance that is embedded in the vRA appliance. Well, it’s upgraded too. Enjoy your new 7.2 instance and get to deploying new containers and Azure VMs with those new fancy capabilities. Happy automating!