How to Upgrade vCenter Server Appliance from 6.5 to 6.7

How to Upgrade vCenter Server Appliance from 6.5 to 6.7 – Stage 2

In a previous article (How to Upgrade vCenter Server Appliance from 6.5 to 6.7 – Stage 1) I walked through the first phase of the upgrade process for vCSA 6.7 (embedded deployment) – Deploy the OVA File of the new vCenter Server Appliance with an embedded Platform Services Controller. In this article I will cover phase 2 of the vCenter upgrade – transfer the data and setup the newly deployed vCenter Server Appliance.

Upgrade vCenter Server Appliance from 6.5 to 6.7 – Stage 2

In the last step of the phase 1, I was presented with the following screen:

Upgrade vCenter Server Appliance from 6.5 to 6.7 - Deploy VCSA Completed

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How to Upgrade vCenter Server Appliance from 6.5 to 6.7

How to Upgrade vCenter Server Appliance from 6.5 to 6.7 – Stage 1

In this article I will show you how to upgrade vCenter Server Appliance running 6.5 to the target version of 6.7. I will upgrade an embedded deployment (as per vCenter Server and Platform Services Controller Deployment Types: all services bundled with the Platform Services Controller are deployed together with the vCenter Server services on the same virtual machine or physical server).

The upgrade procedure consists in two steps:

  1. Stage 1 – Deploy the OVA File of the new vCenter Server Appliance with an embedded Platform Services Controller
  2. Stage 2 – transfer the data and setup the newly deployed vCenter Server Appliance

In this article I will cover Stage 1 (deployment of a new vCSA 6.7). In a later article I will cover Stage 2 (data migration from the old 6.5 vCSA to the new 6.7 vCSA).

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VMSA-2018-0003

VMSA-2018-0014 – VMware Horizon Client Privilege Escalation Vulnerability

VMware has released a new security advisory: : VMware Horizon Client update addresses a privilege escalation vulnerability.

This advisory documents the remediation of one important issue: VMware Horizon Client contains a local privilege escalation vulnerability due to insecure usage of SUID binary. Successful exploitation of this issue may allow unprivileged users to escalate their privileges to root on a Linux machine where Horizon Client is installed.

The Common Vulnerabilities and Exposures project has assigned the identifier CVE-2018-6964 to VMSA-2018-0014 issue.

All 4.x and prior versions of Horizon Client are affected by this vulnerability. VMware recommends update to version 4.8.0 (released 29 May 2018).

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VMware Patches for Spectre

VMSA-2018-0012 – Speculative Store Bypass – SpectreNG

Not long after the first release of Meltdown and Spectre vulnerabilities, Google and Microsoft researchers independently reported two other variants of the modern processors bugs: a new subclass of speculative execution side channel vulnerabilities known as Speculative Store Bypass (SSB, previously known as SpectreNG – variant 4) has been assigned CVE-2018-3639; another Meltdown variation, rogue system register read (also called variant 3a) has been assigned CVE-2018-3640.

Among affected processors we find a wide range of chipsets: Intel and AMD x86, IBM POWER 8 and 9, and ARM CPUs.

Catalin Cimpanu wrote for Bleeping Computer:

Variant 3a is a variation of the Meltdown flaw, while Variant 4 is a new Spectre-like attack. The most important of these two is Variant 4. Both bugs occur for the same reason – speculative execution – a feature found in all modern CPUs that has the role of improving performance by computing operations in advance and later discarding unneeded data.

The difference is that Variant 4 affects a different part of the speculative execution process —the data inside the “store buffer” inside a CPU’s cache.

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PowerCLI 10.1.0

VMware PowerCLI 10.1.0

VMware released a new PowerCLI version, version 10.1.0. I will cover in this article the improvements brought by PowerCLI 10.1.0, the installation process on Windows and the update procedure on both Windows and Linux.

PowerCLI 10.1.0 Changes

New features:

  • New module: VMware.Vim provides vSphere API bindings, allowing access to the latest features available in the VMware Cloud on AWS.
  • New cmdlets: Set-ScriptBundleAssociation and Remove-ScriptBundle added to the VMware.DeployAutomation module. They provide the ability to work with script bundles modification.

Updates:

  • NSX-T module has been updated to support the new API features in VMware NSX-T 2.1.
  • VMware PowerCLI has been updated to support the new API features in VMware vSphere 6.7.
  • Instead of producing a warning when connecting to resources using invalid or self-signed certificates, PowerCLI now produces an error.
  • The Import-VApp cmdlet has been updated to support SHA-256 and SHA-512 hash algorithms.
  • The Version parameter of the New-VM and Set-VM cmdlets has been deprecated and replaced by the HardwareVersion parameter that accepts string input.
  • The Version property of the VirtualMachine object has been deprecated and replaced by the HardwareVersion property.

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VMware Security Advisory

VMware Security Advisory – VMSA-2018-0010 – Horizon DaaS Update

VMware has released a new security advisory: VMSA-2018-0010: Horizon DaaS update addresses a broken authentication issue.

This advisory documents the remediation of one moderate issue: Horizon DaaS contains a broken authentication vulnerability that may allow an attacker to bypass two-factor authentication.

To be able to exploit this vulnerability, a potential attacker must have a legitimate account on Horizon DaaS.

The Common Vulnerabilities and Exposures project has assigned the identifier CVE-2018-6960 to this issue.

All 7.x versions of Horizon DaaS are affected by this vulnerability. VMware recommends update to version 8.0.0.

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Install vSphere 6.7

How to Install VMware vSphere 6.7

In this article I will show you how to install VMware vSphere 6.7. If you are looking for instructions about how to install vSphere 6.5, you can find them here.

To start, you need an installation iso for vSphere 6.7, which you can download from your My.VMware account. From here, I downloaded VMware-VMvisor-Installer-6.7.0-8169922.x86_64.iso (vSphere 6.7 build 8169922). I will install vSphere into a virtual machine (beware, this is a configuration unsupported by VMware, but often seen in home labs), so I will just mount the iso file into the CD drive and power on the VM.

Install VMware vSphere 6.7

As soon as the VM boots, you will see a “Loading ESXi installer screen”:

Install vSphere 6.7 - Loading ESXi installer

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VMware Security Advisory

VMware Security Advisory – VMSA-2018-0009 – vRealize Automation Vulnerabilities

VMware has released a new security advisory: VMSA-2018-0009 – vRealize Automation updates address multiple security issues.

This advisory documents the remediation of two issues: one important (DOM-based cross-site scripting vulnerability which may lead to the compromise of the vRA user’s workstation) and one moderate (Missing renewal of session tokens vulnerability which may lead to the hijacking of a valid vRA user’s session).

VMSA-2018-0009 – DOM-based Cross-site Scripting (XSS) Vulnerability

CVE-2018-6958 – vRealize Automation contains an important vulnerability that may allow for a DOM-based cross-site scripting (XSS) attack. Exploitation of this issue may lead to the compromise of the vRA user’s workstation.

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VMware Released ESXi Patches for Spectre

VMware released patches against Spectre-2 vulnerability. In order to protect against branch target injection vulnerability (also known as Spectre-2), you need to patch the full stack, ranging from vCenter, down to ESXi and the operating system. Don’t forget to also update the firmware for your hardware.

For vCenter, VMware released few days ago the corresponding patches:

Going down to ESXi level, VMware released these patches:

  • ESXi 6.5 – ESXi650-201803401-BG and ESXi650-201803402-BG
  • ESXi 6.0 – ESXi600-201803401-BG and ESXi600-201803402-BG
  • ESXi 5.5 – ESXi550-201803401-BG and ESXi550-201803402-BG

In this article I will focus on ESXi 6.5 patches.

ESXi650-201803401-BG updates the esx-base, esx-tboot, vsan and vsanhealth VIBs. ESXi650-201803402-BG updates the cpu-microcode VIB. Both patches provide parts of the hypervisor-assisted guest mitigation of CVE-2017-5715 for guest operating systems (as described in VMware Security Advisory VMSA-2018-0004.3).

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New Security Patch – vCenter Server 6.5 U1g

VMware released today a new security patch, vCenter Server 6.5 U1g, build number 8024368. This release contains few VMware software fixes, security fixes, and third-party product fixes. The new patch can already be downloaded from My VMware portal (VMware-VCSA-all-6.5.0-8024368.iso, 3.36 GB). Patch is also available through standard online repository.

Updated packages in vCSA (Photon OS):

vCenter Server 6.5 U1g provides part of the hypervisor-assisted guest mitigation of CVE-2017-5715 for guest operating systems (Spectre-2 vulnerability). For more details on this mitigation, see VMware Security Advisory VMSA-2018-0004.3.

The patch also fixes an issue where in some cases the inclusion of an ESXi host into an empty Enhanced vMotion Compatibility (EVC) cluster would fail even though the host met the requirements.

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