snalion
Contributor
Contributor

P2V onto USB drive

Jump to solution

Hello,

I'm new to VMware, and we recently got our first ESXi machine. I've tried running P2V pulls of machines by installing the vCenter Converter Standalone on all the physical machines and it has worked fine. I am trying to convert some of the machines and store them onto USB for offsite backups. The only way I could do this was to select the destination type as "VMware Workstation or other VMware virtual machine" and then select my USB drive. Once I was able to capture the files, I wanted to test them by uploading them into the ESXi datastore and adding it to the inventory.I started the newly created VM and got an error about virtual disk type unknown or something. What am I doing wrong? Are the workstation vmdx files different than the ESxi vmdx files? If so, then the only thing I can think of to do would be to use the Converter and create a machine off the workstation VM on the USB. Is that the only way to do this? Or am I doing something wrong. Please advice. Thanks in advance!

--S

0 Kudos
1 Solution

Accepted Solutions
jpdicicco
Hot Shot
Hot Shot

If I understand you correctly, you are using converter to convert the VM to Workstation format, then trying to attach the media you targeted with converter and add the VM back into the inventory. This won't work. The reason converter has separate settings for different VMware products is the hypervisors are different. They interact with the VMs differently, so you cannot run a Workstation VM on ESXi with out making changes (which converter does for you).

So, to complete your testing, you need to rerun converter and convert the "backup" to an ESXi format before reimporting the VM.

However, there are other (arguably better) solutions for backup. Take a look at this document: http://communities.vmware.com/docs/DOC-10780.



Happy virtualizing!

JP

Please consider awarding points to helpful or correct replies.

Happy virtualizing! JP Please consider awarding points to helpful or correct replies.

View solution in original post

0 Kudos
3 Replies
jpdicicco
Hot Shot
Hot Shot

If I understand you correctly, you are using converter to convert the VM to Workstation format, then trying to attach the media you targeted with converter and add the VM back into the inventory. This won't work. The reason converter has separate settings for different VMware products is the hypervisors are different. They interact with the VMs differently, so you cannot run a Workstation VM on ESXi with out making changes (which converter does for you).

So, to complete your testing, you need to rerun converter and convert the "backup" to an ESXi format before reimporting the VM.

However, there are other (arguably better) solutions for backup. Take a look at this document: http://communities.vmware.com/docs/DOC-10780.



Happy virtualizing!

JP

Please consider awarding points to helpful or correct replies.

Happy virtualizing! JP Please consider awarding points to helpful or correct replies.
0 Kudos
FranckRookie
Leadership
Leadership

Hi Snalion,

Welcome to the forums.

When you use Converter and want to store the resulting VM onto a USB disk, you can only choose the Workstation format. That's because most of the USB disks are formatted in FAT 32, on which you can't store a file bigger than 4 GB. A standard virtual disk used by Workstation is split in 2 GB sparse files. ESX uses thick format that in most cases exceeds the 4 GB limit. So it could not fit on a USB disk.

The problem for you with this virtual disk format is that ESX is not able to run a VM of that kind ( ref ). So you need to transform it before.

If you want to transfer a VM using a removable disk, you have to make a first conversion from ESX to Workstation format. Then move your disk and make a second conversion to the destination's ESX.

Instead of Converter, you can also try to use VMware OVF Tool.

Good luck.

Regards

Franck

snalion
Contributor
Contributor

Thank you both for your replies.

-S

0 Kudos