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What would cause a vmware vmx filie to go blank (0 Bytes)

Posted on 2010-08-27
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Last Modified: 2012-06-08
Occasionally I have had some Virtual machines that I cannot edit/modify/reconfigure.  If I check the vmx file it is blank.  I have tried to restore the vmx file and reconfigure again but the vmx file goes blank again.

We are running virtual server 2 on a centos box.  the vm in question is actually stored on a file share.  I have other vm's on the file share that I can access just fine.

Any ideas?
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Question by:PlazaProp
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Steve M earned 1000 total points
ID: 33543232
Try these options -

to recreate a new VMX file:
http://www.techhead.co.uk/vmware-esx-how-to-easily-recreate-a-missing-or-corrupt-vmx-file

Or this website to create a brand new VMX file
http://www.easyvmx.com/

Good Luck
-Steve
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by:simonseztech
ID: 33551276
First check your file permission of your vm folder
second be sure to not have the .vmx open(editing) when the vm is running or editing config with gui.

Any info in the .log file that can help ?
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Expert Comment

by:linksonice
ID: 38061912
I came across this zero byte .vmx issue yesterday after running some HA (high availability) crash tests on our vmware setup.

One of my crash tests was to disable the storage network NIC on the physical ESXi host. The default isolation response to this test was to NOT shut down, but stay powered on, which is what my dummy VMs did, although they became impossible to work with obviously, not having any access to their storage/disks. Anyway, once I re-enabled the storage network NIC from ESXi, the VMs were extremely unstable, so I thought fair enough, let's reset/restart them, but they did NOT restart successfully no matter what, and I found to my surprise that their .vmx files were indeed zero bytes.

Using the instructions in the techhead link above, I've recovered one of them, and (in a real life situation) should be able to recover the rest of them, although I'm not worried too much, considering they are dummy VMs.

The idea bugs me though - what if this were to happen to production machines in real life?

Also, good ideas for problem resolution aside, the original question hasn't been answered: What would cause a vmware vmx filie to go blank (0 Bytes). Is this a corruption per se, and if so what causes it? Permissions on the "machine folders" are not read only btw.

Also, I managed (in a sense) to re-register a VM from the cmd line after removing it from the inventory, but it came back in an "unknown" or basically unusable state.

Do any vmware experts have any more comments about this? Thanks, Andrei.
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