Yes, you can use the VMware Converter to convert the VM to VMware Workstation/Player format and save the files on your PC.
Then, once it's done, run the converter again choosing the VMware Workstation/Player as the source and your virtual infrastructure as your destination.
However, if the new VM is more than 50gb in size, you may have a space problem. You may want to, on the final page of the VMware converter when moving the VM back to your vSphere host, make sure the disk is set to THIN provision...
Is that a boot-vmdk or data-only ?
If the content is just data I would connect to a share on your admin machine - copy all data - delete vmdk - create new one - upload again.
Inplace shrinking is also possible but quite advanced so I fear posting instructions. Using Converter is an option but that will take quite a while.
It is just a data drive with user profiles, WSUS database and updates, and a couple program installations..
So the process would be something like:
- power off the vm;
- Edit Settings in vSphere;
- Remove Hard disk 2 (data drive);
- Add new Hard disk, with the target size;
- Power on the vm;
- Copy all guest files back to the data drive.
Should there be a concern about Win2008 freaking out about a new hard drive, or should it be pretty seamless?
Your instruction list would probably produce problems if you start the original VM without the program files.
Using a second VM to populate the new vmdk before you attach it to the original would be much safer.
But even with that precautions I would rather recommend not to do that.
Can you resize the partition of the 800 Gb disk ?
If yes , I could assist with cutting the vmdk
But the safest way is Converter in this case
1. Yes, download VM Folder to Local machine. Run this VM in Workstation.
Creating a Workstation virtual machine using existing VMDK virtual disks (2010196)
2. V2V to ESXi using VMware converter Standalone tool.
Post if u need more details.
So BenLebowitz's suggestion to convert to a Workstation/Player on my local.. then delete the vm from the host to free the space.. and then convert from my local back to the host, but with a new disk size (via this: PeteNetLive - KB0000185 - Resizing (Shrinking) Guest Hard Drive Sizes With VMware Standalone Converter (vSphere 5))?
Another option is to follow this post and download the files to your PC first, THEN use the VMware converter to transfer them back.
Personally, I'd prefer to convert it to workstation format using the converter, otherwise, the Converter may not recognize the files being in Workstation/Player format when you go to transfer everything back.
So I can either:
- use Converter to convert to Workstation, copying the system drive and reducing the size of the data drive, but moving the converted vm to my local;
- use Client to download the entire vm to my local, open with Workstation, edit the vm settings, then convert back to Infrastructure on the host.
but either way, after the vm files are on my local, I can delete the original files from the host to free the space?
Considering the total size of the vm (vmx, logs, sys drive, data drive) comes out to over 900gb (thick provisioned), the Converter option seems the most logical, yes?
Yes - a direct download via WinSCP or Datastorebrowser would copy 900 Gb.
Converter can be configured to create a growing disk and so it only has to copy the used data plus a bit og overhead.
It would be a good idea to use the first Converter-action from ESXi to Windows to do the resize and not the second one - safes time
Thanks for the help, everybody! I'll try the conversion this weekend..
As a final wrap-up to this, for anyone curious, it worked!
- Powered off the vm;
- Used Standalone Converter to convert the machine to a Workstation/Player version, but edited the settings to reduce the size of the data drive from 800g to 300g;
- Set the destination to a shared folder on a NAS device and began the conversion;
- Took about 2hrs;
- Deleted the vm from vSphere Client;
- Then immediately turned around Converter to use the Workstation/Player version as the source, and Infrastructure version as the dest on the esxi host;
- Took another 2hrs.
- Powered on the vm, had to restart once, and good to go! All data was in tact and programs worked.
Thanks again for the help!