How to easily install a zip file patch on an ESXi 5.0 host

Posted by Paul Braren on Nov 22 2011 (updated on Dec 17 2011) in
  • Virtualization
  • ESXi
  • patchfeatured

    On Nov 7, 2011, VMware published this kb article about iSCSI delays:
    ESXi 5.x boot delays when configured for Software iSCSI

    it includes a link to this site:
    VMware ESXi 5.0, Patch Release ESXi500-201111001 

    which tells you about the file you download from here:

    by searching for the filename, or even easier, here's the direct download link for This zip file contains numerous patches in the form of VIB files, the screenshot below shows the actual work it did in my situation, which is not much.  But consider this a rehearsal for ESX 5.1 or whatever the next release is called, which may use a similar procedure. Also, be sure to shut down all VMs first, since this will require your host be rebooted!

    Alternatively, if you must be extremely cautious in a production environment here, and don't necessarily have the usual vSphere Client GUI view of your environment, you might also consider these more advanced set of instructions (that take much longer to get through, but have the same end result).

    Here's a simple/fast approach I used in a lab box (with no running VMs), it took 10 minutes total, and there was no issue with any of my virtual machines running after the update.

    1) Enable SSH on ESXi 5.0

    It’s quite easy with the ESXi vSphere client, step-by-step found here.  You can do this for each time you boot, not leaving it enabled at start time (security consideration).

    2) Move it

    I happened to use freeware WinSCP (or Veeam FastSCP) and the simple GUI, but using Linux will do nicely too.  Point WinSCP to your ESX host IP, drag and drop the file you downloaded:
    into the ESXi 5.0 hosts datastore, I used /vmfs/volumes/1.5TB


    3) Patch it

    Then, at PuTTY (SSH for Windows) session on the ESXi 5.0 host

    Enter the following 2 commands (substituing your volume name, where I have 1.5TB in example below):

    cd /vmfs/volumes/1.5TB
    esxcli software vib update --depot=/vmfs/volumes/1.5TB/

    It may take several minutes to return the cursor to you, at which point, it should say something like this:


    4) Reboot it

    That's all!  At boot time, you'll see build 504890 shown on the screen.