Migrating OS X VMs files without VMware Standalone Converter
Since the process I developed is ultimately about getting the OS X VM’s vmdk file up to the ESXi server, then building a new VM on the ESXi server to use that vmdk file, this is an easier technique because it allows us to skip using VMware Standalone Converter altogether. Instead, this procedure will use the vmware-vdiskmanager tool included with VMware Fusion and the VMware vSphere Client application. See below the jump for details.
Converting the OS X VM’s vmdk file
1. Open Terminal
2. Run the following command, inserting the correct VMWare Fusion vmdk file source and new vmdk destination:
/Applications/VMware\ Fusion.app/Contents/Library/vmware-vdiskmanager -r /path/to/vmware_fusion.vmwarevm/vmware_fusion.vmdk -t 4 /path/to/esxi.vmdk
3. Once the conversion process has completed, you will see that the conversion process has created two files:
This is normal and ESXi will need both of these files.
4. Store both files somewhere where you can access them from Windows with the VMware vSphere Client application.
5. Quit out of Terminal.
Using VMware vSphere Client to create a new VM and upload the converted vmdk files
1. Launch VMware vSphere Client and log into the ESXi server.
2. If the ESXi server is using a self-signed SSL certificate, a warning will appear. Click the Ignore button to continue.
3. The ESXi administration console should appear.
4. Select File: New: Virtual Machine… to create a new VM.
5. In the Configuration window, select Custom. This option is needed because we need to set this VM to initially have no disk associated with it.
6. In the Name and Location window, name the new VM as desired. In this case, I’m naming it troutont-vm2.
7. In the Storage window, select the datastore where you want to store the new VM.
8. In the Virtual Machine Version window, use the default option of Virtual Machine Version: 8.
9. In the Guest Operating System window, select the following options:
Guest Operating System: Other
Version: Apple Mac OS X 10.7 (64-bit)
10. In the CPUs window, select the desired number of cores.
11. In the Memory window, select the desired memory configuration.
12. In the Network window, select the desired number of network cards.
13. In the SCSI Controller window, leave it at the default selected SCSI controller.
14. In the Select a Disk window, choose the Do not create disk option.
15. In the Ready to Complete window, verify everything looks OK and hit the Finish button.
The new VM should now be listed. The next step is now to upload the converted vmdk files and associate them with the VM.
16. In your ESXi server settings, select the Configuration tab then click on Storage.
17. In Storage, select your datastore and right-click to select Browse Datastore…
18. In the list of folders that appears, select the folder name that corresponds to the newly-created VM.
19. Select the Upload button (highlighted in red below.)
20. Select the filename.vmdk and filename-flat.vmdk files and upload them individually.
21. Click the Yes button at the Upload/Download Operation Warning window.
The files will then upload.
Once both files are uploaded, you should see only the filename.vmdk file showing in the Datastore Browser window.
Configuring the VM to use the uploaded vmdk
22. Click on the VM and select Edit virtual machine settings under the Get Started tab.
23. Click the Add… button in the Virtual Machine Properties window.
24. For Device Type, select Hard Disk
25. In the Select a Disk window, choose the Use an existing virtual disk option.
26. Select the datastore with the newly-created VM and hit the Open button.
27. Select the uploaded .vmdk file inside the VM and hit the OK button.
28. In the Advanced Options window, leave the settings at the default configuration.
29. In the Ready to Complete window, verify everything looks OK and hit the Finish button.
30. The new hard disk should now be listed. Hit the OK button to close the Virtual Machine Properties window.
With the uploaded VM removed, the new VM can be booted to verify that it is working correctly.