Forgot the question
What am I doing wrong?
How is the correct way convert the image?
just upload the vmdk + vmx via scp.
Then import the vmdk with
vmkfstools -i "uploaded.vmdk" "esxi-compatible.vmdk"
after that exchange the vmdk-path and name in the vmx-file.
Thanks for your reply!
I've got a breakthroug for 15 minutes ago. The issue was that the image wasn't properly shut down - so after another reboot i managed to convert to ovf with:
ovftool source.vmx target.ovf
But thanks for your time!
why you want to use OVF for such a task is beyond me
I am pretty new in the virtualisation world - I have been adviced from VMware to use OVF-tool for this job.
What alternatives are there - what is the right way to make an image ready for ESXi?
If VMware tells you to use OVF - then who am I to argue against that ?
Personally I think that OVF is a very stupid tool - it oversimplifies the vmx-file you have and writes the result into an xml-file.
Several details of your VM get lost by that.
Then it converts your existing vmdk into a format that can not be used natively by ESXi.
Later on the ESXi the converted vmdk has to be imported / converted a second time.
The ovf-file then is interpreted another time and with a bit of luck the ESXi knows how to make a vmx of it ...
You can get more reliable results if you upload the vmx-file directly along with the vmdk - then you only need to convert the vmdk format once.
Most of the times the vmx needs no changes at all - so there really is no need to torture your innocent VM with OVF-tool