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Expand disk size in VMWare ESX 4 option is grayed out

Posted on 2010-08-20
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Last Modified: 2013-06-07
Under the settings of some of my virtual machines, the provisioned size for the disks are grayed out so I can't make them bigger.  I have read other articles pertaining to this and:

There are no snapshots
The machine is powered down

Those are the only two solutions I can find.  I have seen where it is suggested to use the converter tool, but I'd rather not use that.  I used that before and it broke the licensing for the application that runs on the virtual machine and I had to get new keys.
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Question by:jpletcher1
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by:coolsport00
ID: 33488106
Hmm...so, when the VM is powered down, you're not able to add storage space to your virtual disk? You should be able to if you have space on the datastore to do so. You will then need to use either diskpart (if it's a windows partition, and not a system volume or volume w/swap file) to extend the drive within the OS, or a 3rd party tool like GParted or Paragon.

If that is grayed out, your only other alternative would be vCenter Converter.

~coolsport00
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by:jpletcher1
ID: 33488326
I shutdown the VM, right click and Reconfigure.  That opens converter and i go through the steps.  It allows me to modify the company name, etc, but not the hard drive size.
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by:frogmanalien
ID: 33488503
It's possible you have reached the largest size for a single volume on your datastore- depending on your block size- are you able to move it to another datastore at all?
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by:jpletcher1
ID: 33488571
I checked other VMs running on the same datastore, and I can increase the sizes of their disks.  The VM I'm trying to expand is only 10GB and I'm trying to make it 20GB.
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by:bgoering
ID: 33488740
I know that you said there are no snapshots - but sometimes snapshots like to stay hidden in the vSphere Client. Try this:

1. Power down the vm
2. Create a snapshot
3. Delete All Snapshots

See if the option to expand is available after that

Good Luck
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by:markzz
ID: 33488769
You should simply be able to edit the guest view the current allocated disk's.
Type a new figure in and it's expanded.
Then via diskpart  expand the volume to fit the new disk size. (unless it's the system volume or a volume with page file or something the system depends on then your back to the converter)
You could also try the stand alone converter, I personally preferr the stand alone converter BUT it does missalign your disks.
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by:coolsport00
ID: 33488774
If you have a VM b/u solution (Veeam, vRanfer, etc)....they use snapshotting. If any job failed at some point, or if a job is currently running, your disks will be locked & non-modifiable. SSH to your VM directory and see if there are snaps that way.
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by:jpletcher1
ID: 33488810
I just tried creating a snap and then deleting all..  that was a good thought but didn't make a difference.

markzz - that is my whole problem, I can't type in a new size for the disk because it is grayed out.

coolsport00 - i'm not the best with linux commands, what would I type after I connect?  When I look at the datastore under the VMs folder I don't see any snaps listed there in the GUI on the VIC.
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by:coolsport00
ID: 33488825
I'm mobile at the moment & don't have the cmds, sorry :( But if you go to VMwares KB site & search 'delete snapshots', you should find it.
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by:jpletcher1
ID: 33488889
I found the article.  I will give it a shot.  It seems like creating a new snap in the client and then deleting all would clear it up if there were any lingering, but I'll still check and see.
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by:bgoering
ID: 33488895
cd /vmfs/volumes/datastorename/vmname
ls -l

Post output - also post screenshot of edit settings screen for the hard drive
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by:bgoering
ID: 33488901
Yes, that create and delete all trick has worked for me a time or two, but unfortunately it doesn't fix everything
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by:bgoering
ID: 33488955
Another thing to try - if you are using vCenter server, try connecting your client directly to the ESX box that has the troublesome VM and see if the option to reprovision becomes available.
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by:bgoering
ID: 33488998
One last thing - then I will shut up for a while :)

If the disk is an IDE drive instead of SCSI - the only way to expand it would be to use VMware Converter. If that is the case it might be good to convert it to SCSI at the same time.

Good Luck
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by:jpletcher1
ID: 33489022
Ah, it is listed as an IDE drive and not SCSI.  So I have to use the converter then?  The stand alone version?
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bgoering earned 500 total points
ID: 33489043
Well - I spoke too soon about it being the only way. I just ran across this article: http://www.jjclements.co.uk/2010/06/08/vsphere-convert-vm-ide-disk-to-scsi-disk

You could give that a try if you wish. Otherwise (depending) on you OS converter would be the tool to use. Its handy to have around anyway. Just make sure you follow the instructions step by step in the article.

Good Luck
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Author Comment

by:jpletcher1
ID: 33489257
Nice, this is the exact same problem and setup I have going.  Thanks for the article.  Maybe I'll try it out after I get a good backup.  Seems risky but don't have much for options...
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Author Comment

by:jpletcher1
ID: 33489272
Also, thanks everyone else for your suggestions and comments.  Always appreciated even if they didn't end up being the resolution.  Thanks!
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by:coolsport00
ID: 33489369
Glad to assist and that you're up and working :)

~coolsport00
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by:bgoering
ID: 33489394
let me know if the method in that article works for you - so I can decide whether to bookmark it or not LOL - you always have converter for a fallback if it doesn't work.
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by:jpletcher1
ID: 33489402
vCenter Converter didn't give me the option, but I know standalone does.  But when I use the standalone one it tweaks the vm enough that it breaks licensing for the app on it.  That happened to me once already with it...  I'll post back after I try the method in the link.  Thanks
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Expert Comment

by:jhardwood
ID: 38692801
I am having the same trouble described in this posting, except my VM has SCSI drives, not IDE.  I also have other VMs on the same host with the same config that allow me to change the drive size.  If I run the SSH, I see as listed below (lvserv1 is my VM that won't allow me to resize disk).  Any thoughts?

[root@lpesx1 VNX5300-VMFS-LUN2]# [root@lpesx1 VNX5300-VMFS-LUN2]# ls -al
total 586176
drwxr-xr-t 1 root root      1960 Nov 30 11:30 .
drwxr-xr-x 1 root root       512 Dec 14 14:25 ..
-r-------- 1 root root   1441792 Aug 14 13:30 .fbb.sf
-r-------- 1 root root  63143936 Aug 14 13:30 .fdc.sf
drwxr-xr-x 1 root root      2800 Dec  6 09:41 liserv3.lpandt.local
drwxr-xr-x 1 root root      2660 Dec 14 09:06 lvserv14.lpandt.local
drwxr-xr-x 1 root root      4620 Dec 14 14:23 lvserv1.lpandt.local
drwxr-xr-x 1 root root      3080 Dec 14 08:54 lvserv8.lpandt.local
drwxr-xr-x 1 root root      2520 Dec 14 08:37 lvwork1.lpandt.local
drwxr-xr-x 1 root root      2240 Dec 14 08:43 lvwork3.lpandt.local
-r-------- 1 root root 255655936 Aug 14 13:30 .pbc.sf
-r-------- 1 root root 260374528 Aug 14 13:30 .sbc.sf
-r-------- 1 root root   4194304 Aug 14 13:30 .vh.sf
drwxr-xr-x 1 root root      2100 Aug 15 11:07 W2k8-R2-template



Jeff
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by:coolsport00
ID: 38692819
Hi Jeff, unfortunately, it is against EE policy to "piggy-back" someone elses post. You will have to open new question for your issue & we can try & assist you.

Regards.
~coolsport00
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