Error when vMotion from ESXi 5.1 to 5.5 Update 3b

Error when vMotion from ESXi 5.1 to 5.5 Update 3b

I was recently tasks with moving an ESXi cluster from ESXi 5.1 to ESXi 5.5.

I decided to move to the latest update release which was ESXi 5.5 Update 3b (build – 3248547). vCenter had already been upgraded to version 5.5. Your vCenter server version must not be lower than your ESXi hosts to be able to manage the hosts successfully. So you will need at least vCenter 5.5 Update 3b.

I started to put hosts into maintenance mode and perform an upgrade of ESXi via Update Manager. Several hosts were upgraded successfully with only a few remaining on ESXi 5.1. However I was not able to evacuate these hosts while keeping the VMs powered on as I was getting the below vMotion error.

As a work around to be able to migrate the VMs, I did the following:

  1. Took one of my newly upgraded ESXi 5.5 Update 3b hosts and performed a fresh install of ESXi 5.5 Update 2.
  2. I was able to successfully migrate VMs from ESXi 5.1 hosts to the ESXi 5.5 Update 2 host. I can upgrade the ESXi 5.1 host via Update Manager.
  3. Once you have completed the ESXi 5.1 host upgrades you can upgrade your “stepping stone” ESXi 5.5 Update 2 hosts back to Update 3b.


VMware have also released a patch to address the issue.

“Attempts to migrate a virtual machine from an ESXi 5.0 or 5.1 host to an ESXi 5.5 Update 3b host might fails. An error message similar to the following might be displayed:
failed to add memory page 0x201 to VM: Bad parameter”


Let me know in the comments below how you get on, with either the workaround or the patch.

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