What’s New in the HCX 4.3.3 Maintenance Release

🏖 In the pleasure of much needed and appreciated early May beach-side moment of respite, I have fallen behind in my nonobligatory obligations with hcx.design. Here is what happened while I was away:

HCX Maintenance Release 4.3.3 is Published Globally

  • The latest maintenance release dropped on May 05. VMware HCX 4.3.3 Release Note.
    • As a reminder of what has been added in HCX 4.3.
      – Network Extension HA. Improving resiliency to unplanned single NE node failures. This enables longer term extension use cases (until this release, users who opted for HCX NE were forced to bake in or rationalize short term extension as a form of mitigation, and made NE HA the most requested functionality for many quarters.
      vRealize Operations Management Pack 5.3. Read more in the VMware Marketplace.
      OSAM (KVM/Hyper-V to ESXi) migrations for CentOS 8.x and Windows Server 2019. Also for OSAM, the datastore selection was improved, ensuring that only SDR enabled datastores are presented.
      HCX on PostgreSQL. This is related to SSPL implications for the previous DB, and simply had to be done. The objective was to transition smoothly, maintaining parity.
      Increased Bulk Migration Limits (Up to 250 (from 200) per Manager).
      – Delta Transfer and Parallel migration guidance based on network underlay conditions. See HCX in the VMware Configuration Maximums portal.
  • When running HCX 4.3, the 4.3.3 is the latest, most stable, and recommended release. It is a cumulative release that includes all stability fixes in 4.1 and 4.2.
  • Although not strictly tied to this 4.3.3 release, in the same timeframe the PowerCLI 12.6.0 became available recently and fixes critical migration issues on the HCX module. 12.6 is the recommended PowerCLI version to use for automating HCX project with PowerCLI.

Some other things worth mentioning:

Early Adoption Definition

EA information is provided in every with every release note. It has been updated to highlight that VMware fully supports customers who operate on the technology bleeding edge as early adopters. This is distinct from Initial Availability or Early Access designations. This is how the text reads today:

Early Adoption (EA) denotes an initial release phase of a critical service feature with limited field exposure. While the feature has completed its entire development cycle and it is fully supported in production, due to strong dependencies on the deployment environment, thorough validation and qualification is recommended before activating it.

EA in RN.

VMware HCX Lifecycle Info

Please note that End of Support is in the horizon for versions 4.1 and 4.2. HCX adheres to the VMware N-2 Policy which is a fancy way to say two things:

  1. Every major or minor release has a year of support. GA & EoGS dates are always published in lifecycle.vmware.com when a new major or minor release goes GA. Subsequent maintenance releases don’t affect the established dates.
  2. HCX doesn’t have a Technical Guidance phase. The best time to upgrade to HCX 4.3 is now!

Tips for best upgrade experience:
– You can greatly reduce the upgrade time by selecting download instead of download+upgrade. Download the HCX 4.3.3 on all site paired HCX Manager systems well before the upgrade activity.
Plan a maintenance window when there are no migrations are running to reduce points of friction. DR protections may require a force operation.
Upgrade site paired HCX Managers simultaneously. Wait for the managers to be online and fully operational, reporting an updated version.
Kick off the Service Mesh upgrade from the source side only once (this triggers IX/NE/WO/SDR/SGW upgrades in both sides of the site pair).
Opt for the In-Service Upgrade option for the Network Extension to minimize VM impact. Note: The in-service option uses new Network Profile IPs but orchestrates a near zero Network Extension downtime transition. The standard option retains existing IPs may require from 30sec to over a minute for forwarding to resume and disrupted flows to restablish.

That’s all I have. Until next time!


☕️ If you’re feeling magnificent and generous. Buy me a coffee.

Bonus Content: Me and my bunch at the beach!

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