NM... didn't read the full post.
Thanks for your reply! That looks like a good solution, but doesn't SVMotion require a VMWare Infrastructure license? SVMotion seems to be able to move a datastore while the VM is running, but I do not have that requirement. I can accept some downtime while moving the VM. Is there a way to do this without an Infrastructure license?
Two of the most popular ways...
1) VMware Converter 4. - Shutdown the running VM on the host, on your management machines/desktop, install Converter, connect to the ESXi server, select the vm, and follow through the prompts to move it to another ESXi server.
2) Use Veeam FastScp (free) - Install, connect to the ESxi host, browse the datastore, copy the datastore, and paste it into the new server's datastore, once transfer completes, re-register the VM in ESXi and fire it up.
I use both ways, very easy!
You can copy the VM using the Datastore Browser if you don't have Vcenter. In the VI client window, unregister (right click on the VM and select remove from inventory) the VM first, then use the datastore browser (in VI client--> click on summary and right-click on datastore) to move or copy the folder containing the VM to the other store. Then Create a VM with custom options. At 'select a disk' option select 'Use an existing virtual disk' --> browse and select the required .vmdk file and finish.
I guess this method helps you and this is good for moving VM locally.
I would like to try that, but copying using the datastore browser is extremely slow. Seems to be a common problem, but I don't know the cause.
I was probably wrong about Veeam FastSCP and I could have saved a lot of time. FastSCP does indeed pre-allocate space before copying files, which will prevent fragmentation.
Read more here: http://forum.veeam.com/forums/viewtopic.php?f=4&t=181&p=723
Hi MrSpock77, thank you for chosing Veeam!
Just a quick update: Veeam FastSCP is no longer available as a standalone product; it was built-in to another free tool called Veeam Backup Free Edition.
Veeam Backup Free provides all the functionality of FastSCP (including Quick Migration enabling you to migrate live VMs between hosts and datastores if even vMotion and vStorage Motion aren't available) plus many other nice features. For example, now you can backup live VMware VMs and store backups to disks, tapes, external USBs and so on. The minimum required VMware licensing is vSphere Essentials.
You can download Veeam Backup Free here: http://www.veeam.com/virtual-machine-backup-solution-free.html
Please let me know if you need any assistance.
Veeam Community Manager
When I used the Datastore method of moving a VM it ran out of disk space. This was because moving my thinly provisioned VM tried to create it Thick provisioned, and therefore many times bigger than the original.
(This comment is just to help anyone who reads it, I do not expect a reply.)