Can vmdk's be switched between VM's?

Posted on 2012-08-16
Medium Priority
Last Modified: 2012-08-17
I am upgrading a Windows 2003 server to 2008. One of my disks on 2003 server is about 700GB in size. Both machines will remain in production for the time being but can I disconnect the 700GB drive from the 2003 server and connect it to the 2008 server without losing data. I have no problems with redoing the shares and permissions on the 2008 server...I just dont want to have to manually copy 700 GB from one server share to another. The vmdk I want "move" is on a SAN so the actual file doesnt need to physically move at all although I would like to be able to put it in a folder named after the new VM as well as rename the vmdk itself to correctly reflect the VM it's associated too.

Has anyone tried this?

Question by:Mark Lewis

Expert Comment

ID: 38303278
step3Yes. it can be. But some actions need to do.

Base on your description, I think you do not have question about how to connnect SAN between 2003 & 2008 server.

So I just tell you the actions you need to do.

now you create a new VM and use a existed vmdk. you will find a new network card after boot new VM.
you need delete old network card in VM, the configure IP for the new network card.

1. boot VMs
2. open cmd, type
set devmgr_show_nonpresent_devices=1

Open in new window

3. show hidden devices and remove old network card
4. set IP for the new netowrk card

those are the actions you need to do, becase you need do these actions, so your VM will not online about 5-10 minutes.

BTW.  if you are standalone VM Environment, the best way is using export / import VM function.

If you want have 100% online time during move, you need use VMware vSphere
LVL 16

Accepted Solution

Danny McDaniel earned 2000 total points
ID: 38303431
yes, you can detach a vmdk from one vm and attach it to another without issue.

it's best if you down the source VM to detach it but not necessary.  Just edit settings on the source VM, select remove (make sure you don't select the option to delete it and do a backup first to be extra safe).  Then open the Datastore Browser on the datastore it is in (right-click on the datastore from the General tab to get the browser open), then you can use the browser to move the disk to the folder you want it in.  Once it's in place, you can use the browser to rename it and then edit settings on the destination VM and add it in.  Again, powered off is better for the attachment, but not required.
LVL 124
ID: 38303686
Yes, it can be done, ensure you have valid backups.

Featured Post

Free recovery tool for Microsoft Active Directory

Veeam Explorer for Microsoft Active Directory provides fast and reliable object-level recovery for Active Directory from a single-pass, agentless backup or storage snapshot — without the need to restore an entire virtual machine or use third-party tools.

Question has a verified solution.

If you are experiencing a similar issue, please ask a related question

In this article, I show you step by step with screenshots to assist you - HOW TO: Deploy and Install the VMware vCenter Server Appliance 6.5 (VCSA 6.5), with some helpful tips along the way.
In this article we will learn how to backup a VMware farm using Nakivo Backup & Replication. In this tutorial we will install the software on a Windows 2012 R2 Server.
This video shows you how to use a vSphere client to connect to your ESX host as the root user. Demonstrates the basic connection of bypassing certification set up. Demonstrates how to access the traditional view to begin managing your virtual mac…
How to install and configure Citrix XenApp 6.5 - Part 1. In this video tutorial we have explained step by step installation of Citrix XenApp 6.5 Server on Windows Server 2008 R2 is explained in this video. We have explained the difference between…
Suggested Courses

850 members asked questions and received personalized solutions in the past 7 days.

Join the community of 500,000 technology professionals and ask your questions.

Join & Ask a Question