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storage vmotion fails

Posted on 2013-05-21
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Last Modified: 2013-06-06
I have tried a few times to get a server moved to another storage device and it has failed three times giving me different errors

the first time two times i got:

Aneneral system error occurred:  The migration has exceeded the maximum sitchover time of 100 seconds.  ESX has preemptively failed the migration to allow the virtual machine to continue running on the source.  To avoid this failure, either increase the maximum allowable switchover time or wait until the virtual machine is performing a less intensive workload.

After reinsalling vmware tools i get

a general system error occurred: storage Vmotion failed to copy on or more of the VM's diskss.  Please consult the VM's log for more details looking for lines starting with "SVMotion".

The error above mentions the file "Servername-000001.vmdk" as the disk it could not copy.  This file has grown everytime i try to use vmotion (it may just be growing in general).

I need to move this server (worst case scenario shut it down and copy it i suppose), and i also need to deal with the vmdk file that is mentioned above.  Please, if any one has ideas or suggestions i am open to all.

I can't afford to make a mistake as this is a production server and rebuilding will take a too long to restore.  Thanks!!
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Question by:IKtech
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by:Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE)
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Check ALSO, you do not have this server with ANY *SNAPSHOTS*

See my EE Article

HOW TO: VMware Snapshots :- Be Patient

It's either a very busy server, too many transaction occuring whilst the Storage vMotion is occuring, and the size of the snapshot is too large.

or, your storage system or network is too slow.

Have you tried, completing this our of hours, at a quiet time?

If you shut it down, you can perform a Cold Migration. (Right Click VM - Migrate)
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by:IKtech
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this happened in the middle of the night last night.  The vmdk file is rather large it is 450gb.  So maybe a cold migration is the way to go.

i also have the 175gb file named "servername-000001.vmdk"  i am assuming this is a snapshot used for storage vmotion and i would like to get rid of it.  If i do a cold migration will this get consolidated?  THanks!
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by:IKtech
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what if i just did a clone of the vm.  That should take care of the snapshot issue, right?
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by:Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE)
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Yes, clone the VM, will "clone out the snapshot"
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by:IKtech
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i got the server to migrate without  turning it off but i still have the snapshot file.  If i use "consolidate" option under the snapshot menu (this appears when right clicking the virtual machine in vcenter), will this fix the problem?  I want all the changes merged to the parent disk and the snapshot gone.

Or is my best bet the cloning idea?
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by:Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE)
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Delete the Snapshot, if it appears in Snapshot Manager.

See my EE Article

HOW TO: VMware Snapshots :- Be Patient
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by:IKtech
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it does not appear in snapshot manager.
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by:Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE)
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1. Create a new snapshot
2. wait 60 seconds
3. Delete Snapshot (this could take seconds, minutes, hours or days to complete!)

Read me EE Article Whilst Waiting and Be Patient, it's likely to stick at 95%, Wait!

this process, will delete all linked snapshots, is the VM running on a snapshot?
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by:IKtech
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Yes it is running on a snapshot.  If i click edit settings then click on the hard drive the disk file in the right side of the screen references the "servername-000001.vmdk" file.

the size of this file is 180GB.  I am worried that if taking a snapshot and use the delete all button works it will take a long time to finish.  I can't afford to have this server down for days at a time.
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by:Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE)
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that is possible, depend on transactions occuring in the VM, and datastore speed. The VM will still be up, but performance could be affected.

Once you start the deletion, you cannot stop it or cancel.

but remember, the longer you leave the issue, the worse it will get, and performance of the VM is currently suffering writing to a snapshot disk, and if you run out of storage, VM will stop!

It's quicker to Delete, if the VM is off, but VM will be down until finished.
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by:IKtech
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do you think the cloning idea would be less time consuming?
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by:IKtech
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BTW this server is running sql 2008.
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Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE) earned 500 total points
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Personally, I would shutdown, and complete the snapshot merge.
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by:IKtech
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Thanks!  that worked.
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