The Citrix XenServer Rolling upgrade feature was introduced in Citrix XenServer 5.6 Feature Pack 1. This is a fantastic wizard that will upgrade all your XenServers automatically to the latest version from a central FTP/HTTP or NFS network share. So instead of upgrading hundreds of XenServers manually with DVD/USB you can now use this tool instead.
There’s currently a lot of threads on the Citrix Forum so I thought it would be nice to provide a detailed guide on how to do this with NFS.
First of you’ll need to upgrade Citrix XenCenter to the latest version and setup a NFS share with the extracted content of the latest XenServer-6.0.201-install-cd.iso. To extract ISO files you can use Pismo File Mount or WinRAR.
For this demonstration I’ve used haneWIN NFS Server which allows you to setup a NFS share on a Windows 7 machine. This is a great tool for people that want to setup a NFS share on a laptop as Storage for XenServer/ESX or even a multimedia center.
My share is located on D:\xs602 and the -public switch enables WebNFS access.
Start Citrix XenServer Rolling Upgrade from the Tools menu of Citrix XenCenter
Select your pool
and then Automatic Mode – automated upgrade from network install files.
The wizard will run pre checks to make sure that e.g. all VM’s are suspended or shut down and that all VM’s have an empty DVD drive.
The last step before the upgrade starts is to setup the path. Select NFS from the drop down list and type in the path. So in my example my drive is D and the share name is xs602. So the path would be 192.168.1.148:/d/xs602. Make sure to click the Test button to check that everything is okay before you proceed.
The Citrix XenServer Rolling Upgrade feature is a godsend tool to administrators of big XenServer solutions. The only con is that if you’re running Citrix Provisioning Services and using a PVSboot.iso as a backup function for your PXE than you got some work to do. 100 XenServers and 10 VM’s per host would mean 1000 eject/insert of the ISO in the DVD drive of each VM.
Would be great if anyone have made a script to eject and insert ISO images in the DVD tray of all VM’s for a complete Citrix XenServer Pool.