vSphere VMs won’t live migrate to new host because of AES-NI

I was building out our vSphere 5.5u2 Cluster today by repurposing one of our hold Hyper-V Nodes. The system in question is a Dell R820 with the latest BIOS (2.3.2) with quad Xeon E5-4607’s.

After building up the node, joining it to the cluster and doing some sanity checks I was ready to re-distribute our VMs.

I selected a batch of VMs and told them to migrate and during the validation process some of them failed and some of them didn’t. The VMs that failed disabled this:

vSphere AES Warning

VMware has a KB article for this: EVC incompatibility issues due to AES/PCLMULQDQ (1034926)

Strange thing is when I checked the BIOS I saw this:

Dell R820 BIOS

After a bit more digging I found the problem.

We have a whack of VMs who’s hardware compatibility is still sitting at version 8.

I took one of our problematic VMs, scheduled an upgrade to hardware compatibility version 10 and rebooted it. When the VM came back up it now passed validation and could live migrate.

References: Schedule a Compatibility Upgrade for Virtual Machines

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