VMware released its vSphere Hypervisor version 5.5 yesterday and has probably timed the release to coincide with Oracle OpenWorld, but it seems that the virtualization company is warning users against the use of vSphere Replication 5.5 as it is not compatible with vSphere 5.1 resulting into irrecoverable losses.

VMware Replication 5.5 comes as a module in the latest version of just vSphere Hypervisor and is a business continuity software that allows for replication of virtual machines at disaster recovery sites enabling organizations to recover quickly from failure of primary sites. However, the company is warning users against upgrading the Replication module because if upgraded bad things will happen.

VMware notes, “A pre-release version of vSphere Replication has been made available and if you have Automatic Check and Install updates selected the vSphere Replication appliance will automatically upgrade to version 5.5. […] VMware recommends not installing the vSphere 5.5 Replication version in your 5.1 environment.”

The knowledge base article reads “vSphere Replication 5.5 is not compatible with vSphere 5.1, which results in an inability to manage vSphere Replication and initiate failover.”

Users who don’t have automatic updates enabled are safe from this snafu, but those who have it enabled should contact VMware support. To check if you are vulnerable to this cock-up log onto your vSphere Replication Appliance -> click on Update -> then Settings -> then select No Automatic Updates.

VMware is not alone in the list of companies sending out botched updates. As many as 5 out of the 13 security bulletins in Microsoft’s recent Patch Tuesday cycle were marred with issues. Some of the updates were not getting installed despite of repeated update attempts whereas a couple of others messed up users’ Outlook accounts. Another one was asking users to upgrade to Office 2013 from Office 2010 starters while demanding payment.