jondonnis
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Contributor

ESX 4.1 setup

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New to ESX and just installed it on a HP 7900.  Had a 2TB HDD inside.  As I'm new and not sure what I'm doing I just told it to install and all seems fine.

I also have a 500GB USB HDD plugged into this machine.  How would I connect to that HDD?

Also I have some VMs already in VMWare 7.1 (I've already converted a two OK so far).  However, I've come stuck with one of them.  Originally I had setup this VM with a 500GB drive limit.  It hasn't reached that, it's far from it, it's only using 23GB.  However, attempting to use VMWare Converter to convert this VM, at the Options section it says it needs to resize the 500GB virtual disk because "The file system on 'datastore1' does not support file this large.  Please check the file system block size".

Not sure what it means.  The ESX machine is using a 2TB drive that is hardly used.  It does, however, have ESX installed on this.  I know this is based on Linux, is this the reason why?

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DSTAVERT
Immortal
Immortal

Can we verify for sure that this is ESX and Not ESXi.

The default block size during the install will only allow a maximum vmdk of 256MB. If you anticipate creating / needing larger disks you would need to evacuate all your Virtual machines and reformating the Datastore. I would use the maximum 8m block size.

-- David -- VMware Communities Moderator

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DSTAVERT
Immortal
Immortal

Can we verify for sure that this is ESX and Not ESXi.

The default block size during the install will only allow a maximum vmdk of 256MB. If you anticipate creating / needing larger disks you would need to evacuate all your Virtual machines and reformating the Datastore. I would use the maximum 8m block size.

-- David -- VMware Communities Moderator

View solution in original post

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a_p_
Leadership
Leadership

... see e.g. http://kb.vmware.com/kb/1012384 for block size vs. disk size.

André

lowteck
Enthusiast
Enthusiast

Re-Install ESX 4.1 and format your storage using 2m block size, this will allow you ro create VM's up to 512gb insize.

jondonnis
Contributor
Contributor

Yes it's ESX

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a_p_
Leadership
Leadership

This KB http://kb.vmware.com/kb/1012683 will show you how to install ESX with a different block size.

However IMO you should consider to install ESXi instead.

André

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CorporIT
Contributor
Contributor

In response to your question about using your USB disk drive with ESX... Assuming you want to access data on it with a virtual machine: You will need to first install your operating system and then install the virtual "USB Controller" hardware. This will allow you to then install another piece of virtual hardware, which will be the "USB Device" option. Here you can select to connect the USB disk into the virtual machine.

Hope this helps...

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lowteck
Enthusiast
Enthusiast

Just wanted to add something here, If you do not wish to re-install ESX you can simply convert the VM as 256gb, and then add another 256gb disk later.

You could then extend you guest OS partition to 500gb ...(depending on your OS)

low

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jondonnis
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Contributor

Thanks.  I worked out how to do it on VMWare Workstation regarding the USB drive, but can't see the options in ESX.

Why do people recommend ESXi?  Is it better than ESX?

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DSTAVERT
Immortal
Immortal

The ESX classic console install will go away in favor of ESXi. There is no functional difference between the two. If this is a fully paid license then you do have the option of installing either ESX classic or ESXi.

-- David -- VMware Communities Moderator
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lowteck
Enthusiast
Enthusiast

ESXi is better security(no service console), and uses less of the hosts resources than ESX.

low

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a_p_
Leadership
Leadership
Why do people recommend ESXi?  Is it better than ESX?

ESX 4.1 is the last version with the full Service Console and will not be continued by VMware in the future.

There is no upgrade path from ESX to ESXi. This means if you install ESX now, you may have to do a fresh/clean install later on instead of an easy upgrade.

André

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lowteck
Enthusiast
Enthusiast

heres a link on how to attach that USB drive to your host and access from VM's.

http://vstorage.wordpress.com/2010/07/15/usb-passthrough-in-vsphere-4-1/

Hope it helps,

low

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jondonnis
Contributor
Contributor

Thanks for all the replies.  Looks like I'll be putting on ESXi then.  Now I've convertered some VMs already and they are now sitting on the ESX.  Is it possible to just download them from the datastore, install ESXi and then upload those VMs back?

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CorporIT
Contributor
Contributor

Within the vSphere client, right clicking your VM will allow you to select the "Edit Settings..." option. You can add all of your virtual hardware from here.

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DSTAVERT
Immortal
Immortal

If you are going to reformat the datastore then you can move the VMs off the storage and reinstall. If you have decided no to reformat the datastore with a different block size then you can install ESXi to a USB flas disk or an internal SD card if your server is so equipped. ESXi will recognize the datastore but you will need to manually add the Virtual machines by browsing the datastore from the vSphere client. Right click on the VMX file and Add to Inventory.

-- David -- VMware Communities Moderator
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jondonnis
Contributor
Contributor

Thanks to everyone for all the help.  ESXi is now up and running and as someone mentioned it, I looked into running it from a SD Card, so it's now running from that and using the 2TB drive for the VMs.


One last question.  I've ordered two 4GB USB sticks thought I could then back up the SD card onto those and then simply swap one out if need be.  I assume simply copying the SD card to a USB stick from within Windows would be sufficient?  In case one fails?

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