I run vSphere 6 in my homelab and I’ve been lazy about keeping VMWare Tools up-to-date on a lot of my VMs. Not sure why considering it’s easy to upgrade multiple VMs simultaneously WITHOUT needing a reboot using just the standard vSphere Client or the Web Client. Since I know the fear of specific VMs rebooting keeps a lot of people from upgrading VMware Tools, I thought I’d put the small process on here since I’ve been needing to do it too.
Upgrading VMWare Tools on multiple VMs without a reboot
1. Log into the vSphere Client or vSphere Web Client. From the home screen, go to “VMs and Templates” and click on the folder containing your VMs.
2. In the vSphere Client, click on the “Virtual Machines” tab. For the vSphere Web Client, click on the “Related Objects” tab and then “Virtual Machines”.
3. In the middle pane (since you can’t do a multiple select in the left pane), click on one of the VMs you’d like to upgrade, hold Ctrl and then start clicking the other VMs.
4. Now right-click on one of the VMs, then “Guest” (“Guest OS” in the Web Client), and then Install/Upgrade VMware Tools.
5. Once the “Install/Upgrade VMware Tools” screen pops up, paste the following in the “Advanced Options” and click OK or Continue:
VM Version 9 or above (ESXi 5.1 or above version)
/S /v"/qn REBOOT=R"
VM Version 8 (ESXi 5.0)
/S /v"/qn REBOOT=ReallySuppress"
After a bit, vCenter will finish the upgrade process without rebooting the VMs. They say the VMs don’t require a reboot on 5.5+ but I’ve still seen it happen a few times (depending on what VM versions, how old the current VMware Tools is, etc.). But better to be safe than seeing what happens when you trigger a mass reboot of your VMs, right?