Moving VMDK files

If you don’t have vSphere installed, or don’t have Storage vMotion and want to move vCenter itself there are several ways, the “vmkfstools” from the commandline, V2V with VMware Converter or another P2V tool, or by using the vSphere client’s “browse datastore” method which is what I’ll walkthrough here.

This blog entry started with an error:

oops, someone forgot a snapshot and ran VMFS out of space.

The VM needs to be powered off for the move, so if yours didn’t crash like mine, power it off first.

Connect the vSphere client directly to the ESX(i) server
Select the server
Select the Summary tab
Right-click the datastore the VM lives on and select “Browse datastore”

If you’re not sure, select the VM and see what datastores its using.

[Image to come]

Click the virtual machine’s folder on the left then click the Move icon.

Click yes on the next dialog box

Select the destination datastore and the root folder then click Move

Monitor the progress

After moving the VM you’ll need to remove it from the system inventory by right-clicking on the VM and choosing “”Remove from Inventory” (feel free to do this before moving the folder)


After the move, close the current Browse window and right-click the destination datastore and click “Browse Datastore”

Open the VMs folder, right-click the VMX file and choose “import”

[Image to come]

Walk through the quick Import wizard, leaving the defaults (unless you use resource pools)
[Image to come]

The first time you power up the VM you may see the uuid screen, select “I moved it”

Done!

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One Response to Moving VMDK files

  1. Ed says:

    Thanks – very scary to run out of space on a production guest. Your blog entry was spot on. I did run into a files locked scenario and had to figure out how to identify what had the files locked and how to kill the processes before I could move the files – having those steps here would be great as well. Thanks again!

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