Including the HP Offline Bundle as part of an upgrade to ESXi 4.1 U2

If you’re running your vSphere deployment on HP kit then there’s a pretty good chance you use the HP Customized ISO Image for installation, for example this one for ESXi 4.1 U1. These customised images typically contain HP management tools and drivers and are great for saving time during the installation process. Naturally you will be upgrading ESXi at some point, but it’s important that you also keep the HP part up-to-date too. To accompany the release of ESXi 4.1 U2 there is a corresponding release of the HP Offline Bundle. The release notes for this version do not suggest any enhancements or bug fixes, only that it is the version that is supported with 4.1 U2.

Once you have downloaded the HP Offline Bundle, it is possible to deploy it via a number of methods. The installation notes suggest installing with the vihostupdate utility, however in this post I’m going to show how it can be installed via vCenter Update Manager.

  1. First of all the HP Offline Bundle needs to be imported into the Update Manager Patch Repository. Navigate to the Patch Repositoy and select Import Patches.

2. Enter the path to the HP Offline Bundle. (Note: the GUI does not display the full path, just the filename)

3. The patches will then be uploaded to the Patch Repository.

4. Finally, finish off the wizard.

5. Once the HP Offline Bundle has been imported a Host Extension Patch Baseline needs to be created. Navigate to Baselines and Groups and create a new Baseline, with the type changed from the default Host Patch to Host Extension.

6. Select the Extension to add to the Baseline. The best thing to do here is enter HP into the search box to reduce the number of items to choose from.

7. On the final page confirm the HP Offline Bundle has been added.

Alternatively, once the HP Offline Bundle has been uploaded into the Patch Repository, it’s much easier to create this baseline via the vCenter Update Manger PowerCLI cmdlets. :-)  Note that we need to use the Extension parameter since the baseline will be of type Host Extension.

New-PatchBaseline -Name "HP Offline Bundle for ESXi 4.1 U2 " -Description "HP Offline Bundle for ESXi 4.1 U2" -IncludePatch (Get-Patch -SearchPhrase "HP ESXi 4.1 Bundle 1.2-25") -TargetType Host -Static -Extension

The main advantage for me of deploying the HP Offline Bundle with Update Manager is that we can take advantage of Baseline Groups. As the name suggests Baseline Groups enable you to group together multiple and different types of baselines. Consequently in this instance we can place the ESXi and HP Offline Bundle upgrade into a Baseline Group and carry out the upgrade to 4.1 U2 in a single remediation task.

There are similar upgrade packages for ESXi 5 from HP, so this process could also be used for that upgrade.