5.2 Preparing to Upgrade Oracle VM

The first step in the upgrade process is to prepare your Oracle VM environment. This task involves both understanding changes to Oracle VM in Release 3.4 and completing specific procedures before starting the upgrade process.

To ensure a successful upgrade, you should review this section carefully before you begin.

5.2.1 Checking Minimum System Requirements

You must ensure that your environment meets the minimum system requirements for both Oracle VM Manager and Oracle VM Server.

5.2.2 Validating Oracle VM Server Version Compatibility

To upgrade Oracle VM, you must ensure that all instances of Oracle VM Server are at the minimum supported version for upgrade and are at the same minor version within each server pool.

You cannot upgrade Oracle VM if:

  • The Oracle VM Manager that you plan to upgrade manages an instance of Oracle VM Server earlier than Release 3.2.10. You can only upgrade to Release 3.4 if all Oracle VM Servers are at Release 3.2.10 or later, Release 3.3.x, or Release 3.4.x.

    Important

    Although Oracle VM Manager supports current and previous Oracle VM Server releases, it is highly recommended that you upgrade all instances of Oracle VM Server to the latest release version to ensure that you have the latest supported operations and features. See the Oracle VM Release Notes for more information about Oracle VM Manager support for previous Oracle VM Server releases, as well as known issues and caveats that you should be aware of.

  • There are different minor versions of Oracle VM Server within a server pool. Each instance of Oracle VM Server within a server pool must be the same minor version. For example, all servers in a server pool must be at Release 3.2.10, Release 3.3.x, or Release 3.4.x. A server pool cannot contain a server at Release 3.2.10 and a server at Release 3.3.x. In this case you must upgrade each server at Release 3.2.10 in the server pool to Release 3.3.x before you start upgrading the servers to Release 3.4.x.

    Note

    This applies to all servers within the Oracle VM model, even if the servers are not running. If your environment contains servers with different minor versions that are not running, you should delete them if you do not plan to start them again in future.

As a pre-upgrade validation, you receive a warning message if:

  • The Unassigned Servers folder contains servers with different minor versions.

  • If any instances of Oracle VM Server within the Oracle VM model have different minor versions.

Note

You also receive a warning message if any virtual machines have the HugePages feature enabled. This feature is deprecated in Oracle VM Release 3.4.1 and will be removed in a future release of Oracle VM. See the Oracle VM Release Notes for more information.

If you have HugePages enabled for any PVM guests, Oracle recommends that you change the domain type for virtual machines from Paravirtualized (PVM) to Hardware virtualized, with paravirtualized drivers (PVHVM). If you cannot change the domain type for a virtual machine, you should disable the HugePages setting and then restart the virtual machine.

5.2.3 Preparing to Upgrade Oracle VM Manager

Before you upgrade Oracle VM Manager, you must do the following:

  • Review the README file and the Oracle VM Release Notes for any specific issues relating to the Oracle VM Manager release version that you are upgrading to.

    Note

    If you are running a version

  • Ensure that no other Linux users have access to the Oracle VM Manager host and that any monitoring services are disabled for the duration of the upgrade.

  • If necessary, set the umask default on Oracle VM Manager to 0022 before you begin the upgrade process. If umask is set to another value, it can cause the upgrade process to end unexpectedly.

Before you upgrade Oracle VM Manager, you should do the following:

  • Perform a full backup of your Oracle VM Manager database and configuration file before you attempt to upgrade Oracle VM Manager. See Backing up the Oracle VM Manager Configuration File for information.

    Caution

    Database backups from an earlier 3.4.x release (for example 3.4.4) cannot be used in a later Oracle VM Manager deployment (for example 3.4.5) due to database schema changes.

    Note

    If necessary, set the location for storing backups of the local MySQL database for Oracle VM Manager to the default path before you attempt to upgrade Oracle VM Manager. Ensure that the default path is configured until the upgrade completes successfully. See Backing up the MySQL Database Repository for information on default paths and procedures.

  • Make sure there are no database corruptions, as those would cause the upgrade to fail.

    If the database has been corrupted, the Oracle VM Manager backup cannot complete. As a consequence, failed jobs occur in the event log, and no new files appear in the backup directory.

  • Remove temporary files no longer required. For example, run the following command as the root user on the Oracle VM Manager host before you upgrade:

    # rm -Rf /tmp/workdir_sel
    # rm -Rf /tmp/ovm* 

  • When you start the upgrade process, you should ensure that no jobs are in progress or are started using the Oracle VM Manager Web Interface, the Oracle VM Manager Command Line Interface or the Oracle VM Web Services API. If a job starts while the upgrade is in progress, the upgrade might abort. In this case, you must wait for all jobs to complete and then restart the upgrade.

    Note

    When upgrading from Oracle VM Manager Release 3.2.10, the upgrade process deletes any existing job or event history. This step is required because the job and event models are changed in Release 3.4.x to improve performance. If your Oracle VM Manager Release 3.2.10 environment has large job and event histories, you should take this into account when planning your upgrade. It might take several day to complete an upgrade for a very large deployment that includes numerous servers and virtual machines.

5.2.4 Preparing to Upgrade Oracle VM Server

Before you upgrade Oracle VM Server, you must:

  • Review the README file and the Oracle VM Release Notes for any specific issues relating to the Oracle VM Server release version that you are upgrading to.

  • Ensure that all servers in the server pool that you plan to upgrade are at the same minor version.

  • Ensure that there is sufficient capacity within the server pool to perform virtual machine migrations.

    A general guideline is to identify which server in the pool has the most resources available. You should then ensure that there is another server with the same configuration. If necessary, you should add another server to the pool.

  • Upgrade the Oracle VM Manager which manages them. See Section 5.4, “Upgrading Oracle VM Manager” for information on upgrading Oracle VM Manager.

You should also review the following important points:

Important
  • Oracle does not support different versions of Oracle VM Server in a server pool. However, as of Oracle VM Release 3.4.2, you can have different versions of Oracle VM Server for different server pools. This is only possible if all instances of Oracle VM Server within each server pool are at the same release version. For example, Oracle VM Manager Release 3.4.2 can manage the following server pools:

    • Server Pool A: consists of instances of Oracle VM Server at Release 3.2.11

    • Server Pool B: consists of instances of Oracle VM Server at Release 3.3.4

    • Server Pool C: consists of instances of Oracle VM Server at Release 3.4.2

    Although Oracle VM Manager supports current and previous Oracle VM Server releases, it is highly recommended that you upgrade all instances of Oracle VM Server to the latest release version to ensure that you have the latest supported operations and features. See the Oracle VM Release Notes for more information about Oracle VM Manager support for previous Oracle VM Server releases, as well as known issues and caveats that you should be aware of.

  • When upgrading Oracle VM Server, you can add an instance of Oracle VM Server to a server pool only if that instance is at the same version or later than the servers in that server pool. For example, if a server pool contains several servers at Release 3.3.x, you can add a server at either Release 3.3.x or at Release 3.4.x. If a server pool contains several servers at Release 3.4.x, you can add a server at Release 3.4.x only. In all cases, however, Oracle recommends that you add servers at Release 3.4.x.

5.2.4.1 Increasing Partition Sizes for Oracle VM Server

As a best practice, you should provision as much disk space as possible to Oracle VM Server. In future you will upgrade your environment between errata releases and new versions. Over time these operations consume disk space. While it is possible to remove unnecessary files and clean up disk space and resize partitions, you should plan to minimize disruption and avoid issues by allocating two or three times the minimum required disk space, where possible.

For Oracle VM Server Release 3.2.10, or later versions such as Release 3.2.11, the default disk partition sizes are 100MB for /boot and 3GB for the root partition, /. These default partition sizes are not adequate to upgrade Oracle VM Server to Release 3.4.

To upgrade Oracle VM Server from Release 3.2.10 you should increase the partition sizes to the following, at a minimum:

  • 500MB for the /boot partition.

  • 5GB for the root partition, /.

To upgrade Oracle VM Server from 3.3.x, you should also increase the partition sizes if you upgraded from Oracle VM Server Release 3.2.x and kept those default partition sizes.

You can do one of the following to ensure that Oracle VM Server has sufficient disk space:

  • Resize the partitions before upgrading Oracle VM Server, if there is disk space available.

    You can use any appropriate partition editor software to resize the partitions. However, Oracle provides an Oracle VM Server disk resizing utility, which you can download with patch ID 23189880 at: https://updates.oracle.com/Orion/PatchDetails/process_form?patch_num=23189880

    Note

    Before upgrading, you must remove the Oracle VM Server disk resizing utility once the partitions are resized.

  • Reinstall Oracle VM Server with the Release 3.4 installation media, as follows:

    1. Upgrade Oracle VM Manager to Release 3.4.

    2. Migrate all virtual machines off the Oracle VM Server that you plan to upgrade.

    3. Unpresent all repositories from the Oracle VM Server.

    4. Delete the Oracle VM Server from Oracle VM Manager.

    5. Reinstall the Oracle VM Server with the Release 3.4 installation media.

      Important
      • Reinstalling Oracle VM Server deletes all configuration settings.

      • When you start the Oracle VM Server installer, it detects the existing installation and prompts you to select between performing an upgrade or a new installation. If you are reinstalling from Release 3.2.10, you must perform a new installation. You cannot upgrade Oracle VM Server with the installation media if you are currently at Release 3.2.10.

    6. Discover the Oracle VM Server with Oracle VM Manager and add it to the appropriate server pool after the installation is complete.

    7. Re-configure the Oracle VM Server environment to restore the settings for networks, storage, repositories, and so on.

5.2.4.2 Checking the Oracle VM Agent Notification Service

You should ensure that the Oracle VM Agent notification service is working on each instance of Oracle VM Server that you plan to upgrade. Do the following:

  1. Start an ssh session to Oracle VM Server.

  2. Search /var/log/ovs-agent.log for messages such as the following:

    ERROR (notification:44) Unable to send notification: (111, 'Connection refused')
  3. If those messages exist in the log file, the notification service is not working and the Oracle VM Agent cannot send notifications to Oracle VM Manager.

    To resolve this error, you should restart the Oracle VM Agent service on Oracle VM Server. Alternatively, you can retake ownership of the Oracle VM Server from Oracle VM Manager.

    #service ovs-agent restart

5.2.4.3 Recommendations for Upgrading Oracle VM Server

You should review the following recommendations before you attempt to upgrade Oracle VM Server:

  • It is good practice to perform an initial upgrade on a single Oracle VM Server before attempting to upgrade the rest of the servers in a deployment. This helps you to resolve and debug any potentially missing pre-upgrade requirements before you perform a full upgrade of your environment.

  • When you have upgraded an Oracle VM Server, it is recommended that you ensure the Oracle VM Storage Connect plug-ins you are using are updated to their latest versions as well. If you are using the default generic storage plug-ins, they are updated during the upgrade, but if you are using plug-ins provided by a third party vendor, you must obtain the packages from the vendor and install them yourself. Instructions for installing Oracle VM Storage Connect plug-ins are provided in the Oracle VM Administrator's Guide. If you are upgrading from Oracle VM Server Release 3.2.10, you may need to add the packages for your third party plug-ins to the upgrade repository before performing the upgrade, as described in Section 5.5.1.1, “Setting Up the Yum Repositories”.

  • The virtual IP address and master server is deprecated and partially supported in Oracle VM Manager Release 3.4. The virtual IP address and master server do not apply to server pools that contain instances of Oracle VM Server Release 3.4 and later. If you are upgrading Oracle VM Server to Release 3.4, the following rules apply after the first server in the server pool has been upgraded:

    • You can add an instance of Oracle VM Server to a server pool only if that instance is at the same version or later than the servers in that server pool.

    • You can re-master the pool between different servers of a release earlier than Release 3.4.

    • You cannot set an instance of Oracle VM Server Release 3.4 as the master.

    • You cannot remove the master server from the server pool unless the master server is the only instance of Oracle VM Server Release 3.3.x in the server pool.

    • After the last instance of Oracle VM Server in the server pool is upgraded to Release 3.4, the master server and virtual IP address is cleared.