Updating your VCSA to 5.1 U1


In all of the excitement over the release of 5.1 U1, it’s easy to forget about your trusty VCSA. U1 isn’t just for hosts, it’s for vCenter too! It’s easy to update VCSA. Here’s how:

  1. Take a snapshot of your VCSA VM. Treat this update like any other update, and give yourself a fallback plan just in case the update fails.
  2. Log out of any active sessions with VCSA, both Web Client and the vSphere Client. This isn’t required, but you’ll save some time by keeping activity on the VCSA to a minimum during the update.
  3. Connect to the VAMI for your VCSA. Point your browser to https://<vcsa-ip-address>:5480. This will bring up the Virtual Appliance Management Interface, which gives you access to the VCSA administrator console.
  4. Click the Update tab. If your VCSA is set to automatically check for updates, you’ll see a message here that indicates a new version is available. If not, click the Check Updates button on the right. You’ll then see that a new update is available, like in the picture below:
    Update Your VCSA
  5. Install the Update. Click Install, and grab a coffee. Take your time. Really. I’ve done a few of these, and they tend to take close to an hour to complete. YMMV, so share with us (via the comments section) if your update is much quicker. Otherwise, plan to stare at this screen for a while:
    Update Your VCSA_2
  6. When the Update is complete, reboot the VCSA. When the Update completes, you’ll need to manually reboot your VCSA, as indicated by the following message:
    Update Your VCSA_3
  7. Verify that the Update is installed. As a final check, once your VCSA is back online, go to the Update tab and verify that you’re running U1. Click the Details link to see version specifics:
    Update Your VCSA_4
  8. Update the VMware Client Intergration Plug-in. As a final step, you’ll want to update the Client Integration Plug-in to match the version of the VCSA. Start by clicking the link at the bottom of the vSphere Web Client login page:
    Update Your VCSA_5
  9. The installer downloads via your browser. Close your browser, launch the installer, accept the defaults, and you’ll be good to go.

That’s it! Now VCSA is happily running U1. Review the release notes for all the details of what U1 fixes and introduces.

Note: you may find that you get a few errors in your browser regarding long-running scripts after the update. Close your browser and re-open; that should clear them out. If not, check that you’re running the latest version of Flash.

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Nick Kelly

Cybersecurity Engineer, Cisco

Nick has over 20 years of experience in Security Operations and Security Sales. He is an avid student of cybersecurity and regularly engages with the Infosec community at events like BSides, RVASec, Derbycon and more. The son of an FBI forensics director, Nick holds a B.S. in Criminal Justice and is one of Cisco’s Fire Jumper Elite members. When he’s not working, he writes cyberpunk and punches aliens on his Playstation.


Virgilio “BONG” dela Cruz Jr.

CCDP, CCNA V, CCNP, Cisco IPS Express Security for AM/EE
Field Solutions Architect, Tech Data

Virgilio “Bong” has sixteen years of professional experience in IT industry from academe, technical and customer support, pre-sales, post sales, project management, training and enablement. He has worked in Cisco Technical Assistance Center (TAC) as a member of the WAN and LAN Switching team. Bong now works for Tech Data as the Field Solutions Architect with a focus on Cisco Security and holds a few Cisco certifications including Fire Jumper Elite.


John Cavanaugh

CCIE #1066, CCDE #20070002, CCAr
Chief Technology Officer, Practice Lead Security Services, NetCraftsmen

John is our CTO and the practice lead for a talented team of consultants focused on designing and delivering scalable and secure infrastructure solutions to customers across multiple industry verticals and technologies. Previously he has held several positions including Executive Director/Chief Architect for Global Network Services at JPMorgan Chase. In that capacity, he led a team managing network architecture and services.  Prior to his role at JPMorgan Chase, John was a Distinguished Engineer at Cisco working across a number of verticals including Higher Education, Finance, Retail, Government, and Health Care.

He is an expert in working with groups to identify business needs, and align technology strategies to enable business strategies, building in agility and scalability to allow for future changes. John is experienced in the architecture and design of highly available, secure, network infrastructure and data centers, and has worked on projects worldwide. He has worked in both the business and regulatory environments for the design and deployment of complex IT infrastructures.