I thought I’d take a moment to remind everyone that the End of General Support (EOGS) for vSphere 5.5 and vSAN 5.5 is September 19, 2018.
VMware recommends that anyone still running those versions of the software upgrade to vSphere 6.5 or vSphere 6.7 as soon as possible to maintain your full level of Support and Subscription Services. Upgrading to vSphere 6.5 or 6.7 will put you in a good spot, and give you all of the latest capabilities of vSphere and vSAN. VMware has announced that vSphere 6.5 and vSphere 6.7 general support has been extended to five years from it’s release date, which will end on November 15, 2021.
Note: vCloud Suite 5 and vSphere with Operations Management (vSOM) customers running vSphere 5.5 are also recommended to upgrade to vSphere 6.5 or vSphere 6.7.
Visit the VMware vSphere Upgrade Center for more information on the benefits of upgrading and how to upgrade from vSphere 5.5 to vSphere 6.5 or vSphere 6.7. If you’re looking for detailed technical guidance, visit vSphere Central and the vSphere 6.5 Topology and Upgrade Planning Tool.
If you need a little bit of help upgrading to a newer version of vSphere, VMware offers the vSphere Upgrade Service to help you out. This service delivers a comprehensive guide to upgrading your virtual infrastructure including recommendations for planning and testing the upgrade, the actual upgrade itself, validation guidance, and rollback procedures. If that’s something you’re interested in, contact your VMware account team, VMware Partner, or visit VMware Professional Services on the web.
Can’t upgrade from vSphere 5.5 before EOGS? They’ve got you covered there too, for a limited time. VMware will allow you to purchase Extended Support in one-year increments for up to two years beyond the EOGS date. If you need to do that, visit VMware Extended Support for more information.
Another note, Technical Guidance for vSphere 5.5 is available until September 19, 2020 primarily through the self-help portal. During the Technical Guidance phase, VMware will not offer new hardware support, server/client/guest OS updates, new security patches or bug fixes unless otherwise noted (much like what was done for Spectre/Meltdown). For more information, visit VMware Lifecycle Support Phases.
Here’s some more information regarding other software and services that are effected by the EOGS for vSphere 5.5. Depending on your deployment, you may have to take action in support of your upgrade, taken from VMwares blog post on the subject:
vSphere with Operations Management (vSOM)
This bundle of vSphere and vRealize Operations allows you to upgrade the versions of individual components independent of each other. If you are using vSphere 5.5 as part of vSOM, you will need to upgrade your vSphere with Operations Management 5.5 license key, to be able to upgrade the vSphere component. You can reference the VMware Lifecycle Product Matrix to check for the EOGS date for the version of vRealize Operations you are using and the VMware Product Interoperability Matrices for the product version compatibility.
vCloud Suite 5
This bundle of vSphere and VMware’s management products will also require an upgrade of your license key to vCloud Suite 7 or later. Upgrading to vCloud Suite 2017 is encouraged to leverage the vRealize Suite 2017 multi-vendor hybrid cloud management platform. You can reference the VMware Lifecycle Product Matrix to check the EOGS date for each version of the products in the bundle and the VMware Product Interoperability Matrices for the product version compatibility.
This product is embedded in the vSphere 5.5 kernel and by upgrading vSphere you will also upgrade vSAN to a newer release. You will need to upgrade your vSAN 5.5 license key to a newer release license key. Please confirm hardware compatibility by referencing the vSAN Compatibility Guide and if necessary, make appropriate hardware upgrades as needed to maintain compatibility.