How to workaround "Update installation failed. vCenter Server is non-operational." message during VCSA 7.0 update

Posted by Paul Braren on Jul 3 2020 (updated on Jul 11 2020) in
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  • This article is short and simple, hopefully helping some of the many folks that have watched either my Jun 24 2020 or Jun 25 2020 VCSA 7.0 upgrade attempt videos, using VAMI.

    For me, my home lab had a healthy VCSA 6.7 upgrade to VCSA 7.0 GA, performed successfully on camera on release day Apr 02 2020 here. That GA version is also known as: Apr 02 2020 Build 15952498 - Release Notes.

    I then had a successful VAMI upgrade back in March, to release 7.0.0a: May 18 2020 Build 16189094 - Release Notes.

    Alas, since Jun 23 2020's release of 7.0.0b, I've been unable upgrade to it due to error. This most recent release is also known as: Jun 22 2020 Build 16386292 - Release Notes.

    What's the issue I ran into? Let's say you go into vSphere Client, then you select:

    Menu / Hosts and Clusters / Updates / Update Planner

    but instead of a happy link to get you over to VAMI Updates to proceed with your update to 7.0.b, you instead are faced with this error:


    Unexpected error occurred while fetching the updates

    Or maybe you're in VAMI, on the Update tab, you select "Stage and Install" the upgrade, but on page 2 of the wizard you get:


    Update installation failed. vCenter Server is non-operational
    It is recommended that you backup vCenter Server before installing any update or patch

    Why did this error happen? I do not know, sigh. If you do, please drop a public comment below, we'd all appreciate your wisdom!

    The Fix

    What to do? VCSA seems to otherwise be working fine for me for months. Rebooting VCSA doesn't fix this. So it was time to look for a real fix, or at least a workaround.

    I found a fix for the same "non-operational" error VCSA 6.7 here on reddit, which links to this detailed article. I tried it on my VCSA 7.0.0a while recording, and what a nice surprise, it works successfully on VCSA 7.0 too! My new video walk through appears here below, let us know if it helps you too!


    Use VAMI to Enable SSH Login to VCSA.
    1. SSH to your VCSA 7.x appliance
      If you don't have SSH access enabled, temporarily turn it on by following along by using VAMI, which in my lab meant browsing to https://vcsa.lab.localhost:5480

    2. Type your credentials, root username and password

    3. You likely don't have BASH shell active by default, so when prompted, just type:

    4. You'll now see a command like this
      root@vcsa [ ~ ]#

    5. Next, delete this one file, you can copy-and-paste the following 1 line command into your SSH session if you'd like:

      rm /etc/applmgmt/appliance/software_update_state.conf
    6. Try the upgrade again.

    That's it, enjoy your latest TinkerTry Tip!


    TinkerTry - Jul 03 2020 - How to workaround vCenter Update Planner Update installation failed during VCSA 7.0 update

    See also at TinkerTry

    All vSphere 7 articles.

    All vSphere 7 videos.

    See also