Fayez
Contributor
Contributor

How do I access files in a data store folder from a VM?

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Hi All,

I'm fairly new to Virtualization in general (I'm learning!) and have a question.  I have a VMware ESXi 5.0 host server set up with various VMs configured within it.  I also have various data stores configured, typically one VM per data store.  Most of the VMs are Windows, but the one I am having issues with is a Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL) 6 64-bit VM.  I am currently managing/administering the host server remotely, over a pretty slow connection.  Anticipating this, the last time I was on the same network as the host server, I uploaded, into a folder on the same data store as the RHEL VM, about 5GB worth of files that I knew I would need to access in the RHEL VM to install various software.  Now, I am trying to "expose" those very files to the RHEL VM so I can install the software.  How would I do that?

From what I've gathered reading other posts on here, I could create an ISO containing the files and then upload that to the host server for mounting in the CD drive, but my connection is so slow that would take a very long time.  I also gather that I could create a network share on my Windows 7 machine and allow the VM to access files that way - but again, my connection is the problem (not to mention I don't have a GUI installed on RHEL and I'm by no means a Linux expert).

None of the files I need are ISOs, unfortunately, so I can't directly mount them from the data store to the VM's CD drive.  Though I have shell access to the host server, it doesn't recognize the vmware-mount command so I can't access the virtual disk for RHEL to just copy the files into it.  It also doesn't recognize the mkisofs command (which I Googled when trying to figure out if I could create the ISO on the host itself).

So, basically, I'm looking for a way to access files from within a VM that are on the same data store as its virtual disk is.  Whether that can be achieved by copying those files into the virtual disk somehow, or mounting a CD drive or hard drive that exposes those files to the VM, I don't have a preference...  I'm just trying to avoid having to re-upload the files in a different format (or using a different method) since they are already on the host server.

Any suggestions would be very much appreciated - thank you.

1 Solution

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a_p_
Leadership
Leadership

Welcome to the Community,

one option could be to enable SSH on the host and then use scp to access/download the files from the host/datastore (from within the Linux VM).

André

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2 Replies
a_p_
Leadership
Leadership

Welcome to the Community,

one option could be to enable SSH on the host and then use scp to access/download the files from the host/datastore (from within the Linux VM).

André

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Fayez
Contributor
Contributor

I cannot thank you enough, André...  This worked perfectly.  Thank you!

For anyone that comes across this in the future and has to look up how to use SCP like I did, here's the command you run within your VM's command line to copy the files from your host server datastore: scp root@hostserver:/vmfs/volumes/datastorename/path/to/files/* .