JRG1
Contributor
Contributor

Increasing the size of a virtual disk

Let me begin by saying that our servers were virtualized under VMware ESX (VMware version is 4.1) a couple of years ago, and I've had little to do with managing the two virtual machines we have. Now the time has come to add storage capacity to the 😧 drive on one of our virtual guests, and I'll need to do the same for others sooner or later. Here are two articles I've read on the subject:

http://kb.vmware.com/selfservice/microsites/search.do?language=en_US&cmd=displayKC&externalId=100404...

http://kb.vmware.com/selfservice/microsites/search.do?language=en_US&cmd=displayKC&externalId=100407...

I'm very much aware that the slightest misstep can kill a hosted server or keep it from being powered back on, so after seeing these pieces I still have some anxious questions. I'd be very much indebted to anyone who can help me with them:

1.     In the ESX/VI Client/VSphere section of #1004047, point 6 says to follow the steps in #1004071. How likely is it that after increasing the size of the disk per the first article, the increased space will fail to show up when I log into it, right-click on its 😧 drive and view Properties, or check the percentage of free space in Disk Management? This is a Windows 2008 64-bit machine, if that helps. As far as I can tell, it has no snapshots. What I can't tell is whether it has any "third-party partitions." If it turns out that there aren't any, does that mean I won't need to use a third-party utility to make the drive show its new size, that the new size of the disk will automatically be there? The wording of this piece is confusing on the subject. If I do need to use a third-party tool, how will I know which one to choose of the 8 or so listed?

2     When I asked an engineer who works with our local integrator about making the new space appear inside the OS, he gave me an answer that didn't mention anything contained in article #1004071. Instead, he told me that you just go back into the guest, open Disk Management and choose Rescan Disks, then I'll see it. I read somewhere else that you right-click on the drive and choose "Extend." How do these two items of input figure into deciding what to do?

3.     Going back to #1004047, when I right-click on the virtual guest, choose "Edit Settings" and highlight the disk I want to enlarge, I see a figure for Provisioned Size, which I can change (it's 100 gb.), but also one for Maximum Size (141 gb.), which seems to be fixed. What if I eventually need more space than this latter figure seems to allow?

I very much appreciate and, as I said earlier, will owe a great deal to anyone who's had the patience to read through all this and can offer reliable advice. In fact, I'd welcome direct communication. My email address is jgoldberg@ckplaw.com and my phone no. is (317) 846-6514. Thank you profusely in advance.

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5 Replies
Gooose
Enthusiast
Enthusiast

Hi JRG1

I've increased disk space on several of my Windows 2008 Virtual machines without any issues whatsoever.

Just increase the size of the disk via edit settings inside of the VI client, and then all that is required is to open computer management and then do a rescan of the disks.  The new space will then show up as unallocated, at which point you can then extend your current volume into the new space.

Any problems, let me know.

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JRG1
Contributor
Contributor

Thanks, Gooose, I appreciate your input. I have a couple of questions:

1. How would I be able to increase the Maximum Size that’s displayed when you go into Edit Settings and choose a disk?

2. How do you extend a disk into newly available unallocated space on a Windows 2003 server?

I hope that when the time comes for me to expand disk space, it goes as smoothly as it did for you. ☺

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Gooose
Enthusiast
Enthusiast

Hi JRG1,

In respect to question1:

The maximum size that's displayed when you go into edit settings is basically the size of your current hard disk plus any free space left in the datastore that the hard disk resides in.  Therefore, if you want to increase this figure all you need to do is either increase the size of the datastore, or if this is not possible storage vMotion the virtual machine to a datastore which has more available space free.

In respect to question2:

Again rescan your disks. If they do not show then you can use diskpart (unusual that you would have to do this) but if you do then let me know and I can provide you with some further guidance.

Cheers

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JRG1
Contributor
Contributor

Gooose, I appreciate your taking the time with me, being new and untutored. ☺ Regarding question 1, under ESX, how do you increase the size of a data store? Also, I’ve never heard of the term vMotion. As you know, I’m concerned with the integrity of the virtual guest, so that’s the first question that I ask myself whenever trying anything I haven’t tried before.

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Regarding question 1, under ESX, how do you increase the size of a data store? Also, I’ve never heard of the term vMotion.

Datastore is nothing but a LUN that you configured from SAN to ESX server. If you want to increase the datastore, you can add one more new LUN from datastore with the existing datastore. For more: http://www.virtual-hike.com/2009/08/extend-vmfs-datastore-in-vmware-vshpere/

As Goose said, you can perform storage vMotion to get more room on your current datastore. Storage vMotin is nothing but a live migration a VM from one datastore to another. By doing this, you can get more space on your datastore. For more: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4QeL6cBc9og

-GaneshNetworks-

~GaneshNetworks™~ If you found this or other information useful, please consider awarding points for "Correct" or "Helpful".
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