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VMWare Converter Issue (Cannot configure source disk)

Posted on 2010-09-01
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Last Modified: 2012-05-10
Hello,

I am trying to use VMWare Converter Standalone to shrink a thin provisioned VM.

When trying to load the source VM its giving an error,
"Cannot configure disk source"

Do you guys have any idea ?

Guilherme
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Question by:maxihost
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by:Sean_D76
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Did you mean to say thick provisioned?
Because I'm not sure why you'd need to shrink a thin provisioned volume.
Also, you really need to tell us what version of ESX or ESXi you are running.
And if this is standalone or connected to a vCenter server?

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by:maxihost
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Sean,

The reason why I am shrinking thin provisioned disks its because the disk space has been consumed, then I deleted files and want to get back the disk where it is. I am not sure if you know that, but on thin provisioned disks when the disk is consumed it doesnt go back when files are deleted.

I am running ESXi 4.1 its a vCenter server.

Guilherme
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by:paulsolov
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Install the vCenter VMware Converter, it's the new version that supports Windows 7, version 4.2 vs converter standalone version 4.1
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by:maxihost
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Paul,

I tried the new version of the Converter as well. Same issue, I cannot change the size of the new converted disk.

Guilherme
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by:paulsolov
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Can you clone it and thin provision in the process?  Easy fix no matter how large the actual volumes are.

Another way to do this is to image using Symantec Backup Exec System Recovery or Acronis and use the converter to pull back in wiht resize in the process.
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by:maxihost
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Paul,

I am trying to use Acronis Disk Director to copy one disk to another smaller, do you think its gonna work ?

I tried this last time but the new image didnt want to boot, it was giving MBR boot error, even with the /boot partition set as Primary and Active in Director.
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by:justadad
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Can you load the VM into VMPlayer on Windows and then execute the Compact under the Utilities?
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by:Sean_D76
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Ah, yes I knew that about thin disks but just forgot... sorry.

ESXi makes it a bit trickier but you can load the CLI tools and run the cli command for moving the disk files.

OK this shoudl work for you:

1.) Enable ssh on your ESXi server and putty in  (or just use the hidden console):
http://www.experts-exchange.com/Software/VMWare/Q_24197133.html

That guide is for esxi 3.5 but I believe it works.

2.)  CD to your VMDK files... should be somewhere in /vmfs/volumes/NAME OF YOUR vStor/

3.) Run the command:
vmkfstools -d thin -i YOUR_FILE.vmdk  NEW_FILENAME.vmdk

It will recreate the file much smaller.  Same procedure for converting thick VMDK files to thin.
Of course you have to have the disk space to create this file.  You can mount some temporary storage or something if space is tight.  You cannot simply rename the files though.  But you can easily edit your VM and just point it to the new disk files instead. or you can copy them to a different folder and keep the same name and then copy them back.  One problem with that though is that I read that you should always use the vmkfstools to move vmdk files around because of fragmentation and performance concerns.  Not sure how much truth there is to that but that's what I read.
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by:Sean_D76
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Not sure of you have any linux experience... if you need help navigating the file system with cd then let me know.
To list the files in the directory you are in you'll need to use 'ls -al' instead of 'dir' in DOS.
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by:maxihost
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Sean,

I will try to run vmkfstools as you told and let you know.

I have experience with Linux yes, thanks.

Guilherme
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by:maxihost
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Sean,

I am curious, isnt that the same as cloning a VM ? If it is, it wont make the disk smaller.

I am doing that, but not sure if its gonna shrink.

Guilherme
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by:maxihost
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Also, I have started that process and when I go to the datastore and click the right button it shows provisioned size as 500GB (same old size).
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by:chkdsk01
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You will need to reclaim that storage space.  Because the disk was originally thick, all 60 GB was allocated.  Then you converted it to thin....  The thick to thin conversion does just that, convert.  It does not reclaim the 30 GB of "empty" space.  Check out this article.
http://www.virtualizationteam.com/virtualization-vmware/vsphere-virtualization-vmware/vmware-esx-4-reclaiming-thin-provisioned-disk-unused-space.html
And this
http://www.experts-exchange.com/Software/VMWare/Q_26463624.html?cid=1133#a33646349
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chkdsk01 earned 500 total points
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Sorry, the 60 GB comment doesn't apply.  I copied and pasted quickly from another post I made.  Either way, you need to reclaim that space.  Check out the links I posted and using sdelete from MS systernals followed by a storage vMotion.
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by:Sean_D76
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Ah yes.  He's right.  Need to zero the free space first.  I think a defrag might also accomplish that but probably not as thoroughly as the above sdelete method.  You can use vmkfstools in lieu of the vStorage vMotion step in that guide as well if you like.  It is essentially the same thing happening in the background.
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