6.6. Updating Virtual Machine Guest Agents and Drivers

The Red Hat Virtualization guest agents, tools, and drivers provide additional functionality for virtual machines, such as gracefully shutting down or rebooting virtual machines from the VM Portal and Administration Portal. The tools and agents also provide information for virtual machines, including:

  • Resource usage
  • IP addresses
  • Installed applications

The guest tools are distributed as an ISO file that you can attach to virtual machines. This ISO file is packaged as an RPM file that you can install and update from the Manager machine.

6.6.1. Updating the Guest Agents and Drivers on Red Hat Enterprise Linux

Update the guest agents and drivers on your Red Hat Enterprise Linux virtual machines to use the latest version.

Updating the Guest Agents and Drivers on Red Hat Enterprise Linux

  1. Log in to the Red Hat Enterprise Linux virtual machine.
  2. Update the ovirt-guest-agent-common package:

    # yum update ovirt-guest-agent-common
  3. Restart the service:

    • For Red Hat Enterprise Linux 6

      # service ovirt-guest-agent restart
    • For Red Hat Enterprise Linux 7

      # systemctl restart ovirt-guest-agent.service

6.6.2. Updating Windows drivers with Windows Update

When you need to update the drivers for a Windows virtual machine, the simplest method is to use Windows Update.


  1. Log in to the virtual machine.
  2. Ensure that Windows Update is enabled so you can get updates.
  3. Check Windows Update for updates from Red Hat, Inc.
  4. Manually install any updates that have not been automatically installed.

Additional resources

6.6.3. Updating Windows guest agents and drivers using the command prompt

When you do not have access to Windows Update to update Windows drivers, or when you need to update the oVirt guest agents, you can do so from the virtio-win package by using the virtual machine’s command prompt. During this procedure, you must remove and reinstall the drivers, which can lead to network disruption. This procedure restores your settings after reinstalling the drivers.


  1. If you are updating the drivers, on the Windows virtual machine, use the netsh utility to save TCP settings before uninstalling the netkvm driver:

    C:\WINDOWS\system32>netsh dump > filename.txt
  2. On the Manager machine, update the virtio-win package to the latest version:

    # dnf upgrade -y virtio-win

    The virtio-win_version.iso file is located in /usr/share/virtio-win/ on the Manager machine.

  3. Upload the ISO file to a data domain. For more information, see Uploading Images to a Data Storage Domain in the Administration Guide.
  4. In the Administration or VM Portal, if the virtual machine is running, use the Change CD drop-down list to attach the virtio-win_version.iso file to each of your virtual machines. If the virtual machine is powered off, click the Run Once button and attach the ISO as a CD.
  5. Log in to the virtual machine.
  6. Select the CD Drive (D:\ for this example) containing the virtio-win_version.iso file.
  7. Reinstall the guest agents or drivers:

    • To reinstall only the guest agents, use qemu-ga-x86_64.msi:

      C:\WINDOWS\system32>msiexec.exe /i D:\guest-agent\qemu-ga-x86_64.msi /passive /norestart
    • To reinstall the drivers, use virtio-win-gt-x64.msi:

      C:\WINDOWS\system32>msiexec.exe /i D:\virtio-win-gt-x64.msi /passive /norestart
  8. If you are updating the drivers, restore the settings you saved using netsh:

    C:\WINDOWS\system32>netsh -f filename.txt