Download/Install VMware ESXi 6.0 U1a and vSphere 6.0 Update 1

Posted by Paul Braren on Oct 20 2015 (updated on Feb 3 2016) in
  • ESXi
  • Virtualization
  • Sorry, this article had to be reworked since originally published, details for the reasons why below.

    If you're building new, you'll certainly want to use the new hypervisor, since the serious NETDEV WATCHDOG issue KB 2124669 that sometimes causes ESXi to hang is resolved. This article is about getting the fresh downloads going for your "greenfield" installs. If you don't have a commercial license, and are instead using a trial, free, or EVALExperience, you won't be able to grab the 6.0 Update 1a ISO directly.

    [Oct 30 2015 Update]
    What I learned today is that you can contact VMware by email at to inquire about obtaining the ESXi 6.0 Update 1a ISO named
    they'll open a Service Request (SR#), and may be able to help you with a WebEx and get you that file earlier, much as they did for me, for free, under SR#15788958810. Or you can wait 60 or more days for VMware to allow anybody with any My VMware acount to access and download this file. I have given VMware constructive and thorough feedback about how silly this is. The old trick of signing up for a new My VMware account under a differerent email address doesn't help for getting 6.0 Update 1a either. I think you opening a ticket via email is likely the best approach, since VMware will then better understand/track the impact of this 60+ day delay. But if you just want to get your existing 6.0 updated to 1a right now, worry not, got you covered, simply skip to section 1B below.

    1) Download ESXi 6.0 Update 1a

    A) Registered commercial license key users can download the 6.0 Update 1a ISO

    If you do want the ESXi 6.0 Update 1a ISO, and the full vSphere 6.0 U1a with vCenter Server Appliance (vCSA) for the FUN and useful stuff like vMotion, and you have a commercial license, here's the link for all that stuff:

    The ESXi 6.0 1a hypervisor file you want:

    Name: VMware-VMvisor-Installer-6.0.0.update01-3073146.x86_64.iso
    Release Date: 2015-10-06
    Build Number: 3073146

    B) EVALExperience/trial/free hypervisor download/apply 6.0 Update 1a patch directly

    These steps have been tested, and work great in my home lab. Before you begin, first, you need to review William Lam's warning:

    Disclaimer: This method assumes you can install the default ESXi Image Profile with no additional drivers or packages, else you may have connectivity issue after the upgrade. If you still need to customize the ESXi Image Profile before installation, you will still need to use something like Image Builder and then upload that to your online depot.

    ...and Andreas Peetz warning:

    Important note: Before doing this please check whether you rely on one of the NIC drivers (e.g. Realtek) that were blacklisted in ESXi 6.0. You then need to carry out an additional step before doing the upgrade - see my earlier post (section 2) for details.

    For my SuperServer Workstation, I didn't have to worry about VIBs: the stock drivers built into 6.0 are all I need to succeed. Even if I do need AHCI or NVMe VIBs in the future, I can just re-add such VIBs after similar future upgrades.

    1. Open an SSH session (PuTTY) to your ESXi 6.0 (or ESXi 6.0 Update 1) server
      (if you forgot to enable SSH, here's how)
    2. Put your system into maintenance mode, or ensure you've set your ESXi host to automatically gracefully shutdown all VMs upon host reboot
    3. Paste the following 2 commands (cut-and-paste one line at a time):
      esxcli network firewall ruleset set -e true -r httpClient
      esxcli software profile update -d -p ESXi-6.0.0-20151004001-standard
    4. Type "reboot" and hit return
    Here's how my upgrade from build 3029758 to 3073146 looked right after the 5 minute download/patch.

    2) Download vCenter Server Appliance

    And the other two files are the same vSphere 6.0 Update 1 (there is no 1a), and are available to all license types (commercial, EVALExperience, trial, free).


    3) Read the Release notes here

    4) Read the EULA here

    5) A variety of issues may strike, you will (probably) prevail!

    For non-corporate license holders, such as home lab EVALExperience licenses, you may get the following warning when you try to download vCSA from the above download site:

    You either are not entitled or do not have permissions to download this product.
    Check with your My VMware Super User, Procurement Contact or Administrator.

    If you recently purchased this product through VMware Store or through a third-party, try downloading later.
    Download Trial


    I have just the detailed article for you, right here at TinkerTry! In summary, it explains that you may be able to use the Download Trial option, followed by the "View My Evaluations" option. If that doesn't work out because of a "Your evaluation has expired. 0 days remaining on your evaluation" then don't lose heart, just logoff. Then register for a trial under a different, new My VMware account, choosing VMware vSphere." Now you can download vCSA and install. Later on, you apply your EVALExperience license that's suited for home lab users. I know, it's a mess, I apologize for VMware, even though I have absolutely no authority to do so ;-)

    I'm getting a fairly smooth 75Mbps download speed tonight, using Resource Monitor to confirm the bits are flowing from Akamai CDN. Drop us a comment below to let us know how your download is going!

    Happy Tinkering!

    It would seem that David Stamen broke the news first, with a simple October 6th tweet:

    Oct 22 2015 09:45am EDT - My apologies for the errors in my intitial version of this article, the links and screenshots are being fixed, but right now, VMware seems to be having issues with taking new registrations for free trials. I'm unable to download ESXi 6.0 Update 1a myself, even under a brand-new MY VMware account.

    Oct 26 2015 10:50am EDT - I have been trying every day, with no luck yet. Today, same issue, still can't register for trial/download.

    Oct 26 2015 07:00pm EDT - VMware Support is able to replicate the problem, under my Support Request # 15787597310. I am still unable to obtain a ESXi 6.0 Update 1a ISO.


    Oct 27 2015 10:50am EDT - I'm seeing a new issue today, pictured below.

    New message seen when trying to get to My VMware today, Oct 27 2015.

    Oct 28 2015 9:18pm EDT - VMware has stated they've fixed the server-side issues pictured above. However, they've also verified that EVALExperience license keys cannot be registered, thus, 6.0 Update 1a won't be available as an ISO to download. That's only for Commercial License holders. So installing ESXi 6.0 Update 1 off the ISO is the way to go, upgrading to 6.0 Update 1a later on using the esxcli method I outlined above.

    Jan 07 2016 Update

    Feb 03 2016 Update

    I got rather fed up with relying on the mercy of VMware support, to be able to get the ISO of the latest ESXi 6.0 Update 1b. Heck, you can't even get the latest vSphere Client without a valid licensed copy of VMware, see related TinkerTry visitor willbill comments here.

    So I went and put down my $399 USD for the Acadmic VMware Essentials, described here.

    See also at TinkerTry

    See also