VMware ESX 3.5 - Expand vdmk boot partition

We are running vmware 3.5, and have a vm server 2008 that has one drive with 2 partition's C: (20gb) D: (20gb) We need to expand the C: (boot partition).

When I turn the vm machine off and expand the hdd to 60gb it doesnt take the changes. I believe I read somewhere that you can't do this if you have snapshots of this server. Which I do. I'm fairly new to vmware infrastructure. Here are my 2 questions:

1) If I can't expand because of the snapshots.. How can I expand while having a backup? Clone the vm, make the changes on the clone, then create a snapshot of the new vm for backup purposes?

2) Anyone know of some easy how-to's URL's on the process after extending the hdd? (I heard gparted or just win2k8 system disk is the way to go?)

Thanks experts!
PapaSmurffAsked:
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Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE Fellow)VMware and Virtualization ConsultantCommented:
1. either commit the existing snapshots.

Or

2. Shutdown vm clone to new vm

3. Expand vm to 60gb

4. Boot with boart and grow windows partition

5. Power up vm

6. Snapshot

7. When happy remove old original vm.

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Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE Fellow)VMware and Virtualization ConsultantCommented:
That should be gpart!
Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE Fellow)VMware and Virtualization ConsultantCommented:
Also snapshots are not backups.

You really should have a backup plan, either clone, scripts, or third party software, vizioncore vranger, veeam, phd virtual etc
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Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE Fellow)VMware and Virtualization ConsultantCommented:
It's easy to extend the partitions out using gparted as it has a gui.

Get the vmdk expanded and I'll take you through the steps with pictures if you like

Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE Fellow)VMware and Virtualization ConsultantCommented:
Paul SolovyovskySenior IT AdvisorCommented:
An easy to do this without using 3rd party products is to use vmware converter.  Point converter to the OS and essentiantiall make another copy of the VM but using the converter allows you to resize the partition.  This is non distructive way to do this and you still have your source VM if something doesn't work out.
Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE Fellow)VMware and Virtualization ConsultantCommented:
yes, I know several large organisations that use VMware Convertor as a backup tool!
nappy_dThere are a 1000 ways to skin the technology cat.Commented:
Since you are running W28, after expanding the disk, simply go into disk management on the 2008 server and expand the partition on the fly, without a shutdown or 3rd party tools.  

This functionality is now included with Winddows 2008.
Paul SolovyovskySenior IT AdvisorCommented:
@nappy_d:  Only if the system drive is on a seperate volume,otherwise have to use 3rd party tools
PapaSmurffAuthor Commented:
Ok, so I cloned the vm and have a test vm. When I increase the hard disk space is the the new 20 gb unallocated space, however, when I click resize-move within g-parted it says I'm maxed at the current 20gb and can't add the additional 20gb. Any ideas?

Im following this how-to: http://www.howtogeek.com/howto/windows-vista/using-gparted-to-resize-your-windows-vista-partition/

Thanks.
Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE Fellow)VMware and Virtualization ConsultantCommented:
would it be possible to send a screenshot of what you've got in gparted?
PapaSmurffAuthor Commented:
I must be doing something wrong. I've never used this program before. Ive attached two images.
gparted1.bmp
pgarted2.bmp
Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE Fellow)VMware and Virtualization ConsultantCommented:
Okay, so you have a disk which is 60GB.

and two partitions C: 20GB and D: 20GB and you want to increase the size of C: (boot) 20 GB to 40GB.

You first need to move D: 20GB partition "down" the disk.

When you have moved D: 20GB "down" the disk to the new unallocated space. The original 20GB space will be unallocated, and then you can expand C: 20GB to 40GB, I hope that's clear.

Andrew
Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE Fellow)VMware and Virtualization ConsultantCommented:
if you want me to show you remotely contact email in,profile!
PapaSmurffAuthor Commented:
That is clear. I'll try tonight and let you know how I make out. Thanks for the quick responses.
Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE Fellow)VMware and Virtualization ConsultantCommented:
no problems.
PapaSmurffAuthor Commented:
Awesome. Thanks so much! Gparted is the way to go. 20GB's has been added to the C: You da man!
Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE Fellow)VMware and Virtualization ConsultantCommented:
Many Thanks for your kind words.
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