This is part 2 of the series Upgrading to vSphere 5.1. Make sure to check out the other parts as well.
Part 1 – Upgrading a stand-alone host
Part 2 – Prerequisites for upgrading with Update Manager 1/2
Part 3 – Prerequisites for upgrading with Update Manager 2/2
Part 4 – Upgrading the hosts with Update Manager
Part 5 – Upgrading virtual machines
Part 6 – Upgrading datastores
VMware documentation on the upgrade can be found here.
Available with vSphere 5.1 VMware Single Sign-On which enables you to use multiple system repositories to authenticate when connecting to vCenter 5.1.
In vCenter 5.0 and earlier versions one could use Active Directory or local account to connect to vCenter Server. Single Sign-On adds to this list OpenLDAP as an Identity Source as well as system users (internal SSO users).
To install vSphere 5.1 Inventory Service or new Web Client, you need to install SSO firts. The process is quite straightforward.
The default administrator login which is created with SSO installation is admin@system-domain on vCenter Server installed on Windows Server or root@system-domain on vCenter Applicance. Don’t worry if you lock out the admin account (like it happened to me as it unlocks automatically after 15 min.
To manage SSO login with Web Client: open the browser and go to https://<your_server>:9443/vsphere-client/ You will need Flash Player installed (version 11 I think, did not work with 10). Web Client allows better integration with vCenter Orchestrator. Some features are also available when using Web Client only (new vMotion is an example).
If you want to add a new administration (the only one till now is admin authenticated internally by SSO server) click on Administration and under Sign On and Discovery click on Configuration. Make sure that under Identity Sources your server is listed. If not – add it.
You added an identity source (your local server in this case but it might have been OpenLDAP or AD as well). Now let’s add one of principals provided by this identity source as an administrator. Under Access click on SSO Users and Groups. Go to Groups tab and select __Administrators__. Click on Add principals. Add your account. Now you can use it top login to vCenter Web Client.
When you install and configure SSO you can go ahead with upgrade to vSphere 5.1.
VMware resources on Single sign-On:
And last but not least this VMware blog entry lists all VMware KBs on SSO troubleshooting.