Manually updating VMware tools on ESXi 6.5

With ESXi 6.5 you have to manually update VMware Tools. Although it can be done rather quickly:

Start by turning on SSH on the ESXi host you need to update.

Then login and go to o the directory that contains the VMWare Tools “cd /vmimages/tools-isoimages/” and make a backup of the current tools. This is optional, but highly recommended.

Then you will need to SCP over the new VMware Tools files. Keep in mind that you will need to do this for each OS you keep tools for, IE Windows and MacOS (Darwin). Since the new recommended way to manage VMware Tools on Linux is through the Open Tools repo you don’t need to worry about Linux.

scp -r <LOCAL DIR>/* <USER>@<IP OF HOST>:/vmimages/tools-isoimages

After that you should also update the files in the floppies folder as well.

scp -r <LOCAL DIR>/* <USER>@<IP OF HOST>:/vmimages/tools-isoimages

Once you have updated VMware tools and verified it is working properly you can delete you backup. With MacOS machines you may need to manually mount and install the new tools, however on Windows machines a reboot should install them if you have it set to auto-update at startup.

For ESXi 7 the process is similar however the directory has changed you will find the tools under “/vmfs/volumes/<ID>/packages/vmtoolsRepo”.

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