5 Replies Latest reply: May 31, 2012 1:02 PM by char27 RSS

    Workstation 8 Shared VMs on different hard drives for autostart

    dmelnyk Lurker

      Hi Folks:

       

           Is there anyway to take advantage of the Workstation 8 feature of having shared VMs autostart with the boot of the host OS, but have various VMs on different hard drives? Ideally I would like to have the VMs on separate hard drives for perfomance issues. \

       

           I do not really want to go the ESXi route at the moment. Is there any way to "autostart"  VMs other than through the "Shared VMs" component of VMware workstation 8? I would think that this would be a trivial feature to add to Workstation 8, and would make it super useful for small users like myself.

       

      Best regards, Dave Melnyk

        • 1. Re: Workstation 8 Shared VMs on different hard drives for autostart
          continuum Guru User Moderators vExpert

          In 2003 host I use junction.exe to create  "links" from the original directory to a junction point inside the shared VMs directory.
          On Windows 7 use mklink

           

          Once the "link" is created doubleclick the file from its path under the shared VMs directory and then you can add it to te shared VMs"

           

          example:
          shared VMs dir is configured as C:\shared VMs
          and you want to run g:\android4\android4.vmx as shared VM

           

          cd "c:\shared vms"
          junction.exe android g:\android4

           

          next doubleclick c:\shared vms\android\android.vmx
          so that the VM gets added to the library with the new path
          right click VM > manage > share

           

          no need to move any files at all

          • 2. Re: Workstation 8 Shared VMs on different hard drives for autostart
            dmelnyk Lurker

            Thanks for the reply. This was a feature with which I am not partiularly familiar. I guess I need the "MkLink for Dummies" version. If you could give an example I would appreciate it. Does it have to be a junction to a directory or just the target file of the VM?

             

            Best regards and many thanks ... Dave Melnyk

            • 3. Re: Workstation 8 Shared VMs on different hard drives for autostart
              continuum Guru User Moderators vExpert

              mklink /d <directory inside shared VMs folder> <original directory>

               

              must be done as admin

              • 4. Re: Workstation 8 Shared VMs on different hard drives for autostart
                dmelnyk Lurker

                Sir... I tip my hat to you .. brilliant answer!

                 

                (Little tricky to do as I am admittedly not familiar with this method) and was making the mistake of setting up the link directly to the target file - ie: .vmx rather than just the folder.

                 

                PEREFECTLY solves my problem. I am surprised as I have come across a few posts of people trying to do the same thing and being thwarted. I shall try and find those posts and spread the word!

                 

                Again .. many thanks and my undying gratitude!

                 

                Best regards, Dave Melnyk

                • 5. Re: Workstation 8 Shared VMs on different hard drives for autostart
                  char27 Lurker

                  Another option which I use is to store your VMDK files in seperate folders from your VM config (VMX).

                   

                  I keep my VMs (shared and not) on my C drive but keep the drive images on different drives.  Another benefit to this is to allow keeping all your VM configs in one folder without using a ton of space on that drive.  The main VM folder will mainly store the state information so will take 1x to 2x as much space as you have configured RAM in the VM.

                   

                  The only trick is using the fileSearchPath parameter in the VMX file.  With sharing, you will not be able to edit the drives in the UI since it must be hardcoded to look in the shared folder but the VM will start if the drives exist in the fileSearchPath entries.  With non-shared VMs, there is no issue.