Home > Mac administration, Mac OS X, VMware, VMware ESXi > Fixing the OS version of transferred ESXi-hosted OS X VMs

Fixing the OS version of transferred ESXi-hosted OS X VMs

Starting with VMware Fusion 7.x Professional, it’s been possible to transfer virtual machines from VMware Fusion to VMware ESXi. This ability has been improved with VMware Fusion 8.x Professional, but there is a recurring issue with OS X VMs transferred from VMware Fusion to VMware ESXi 6.x. The symptoms normally look like this:

1. An OS X VM running OS X 10.10.x or 10.11.x is created in VMware Fusion 8.x Professional
2. The hardware version of the OS X VM is changed to Hardware Version 11, to allow compatibility with ESXi 6.x

Screen Shot 2015 12 15 at 7 49 24 PM

3. The VM is transferred successfully to VMware Fusion 8.x Professional to the ESXi 6.x server
4. Following the transfer, the OS X VM is started but does not successfully complete the OS startup process.

Screen Shot 2015 12 15 at 9 22 41 AM

The root cause is that there is some OS information which is not transferred successfully along with the VM, but it’s relatively straightforward to fix. For more details, see below the jump.

The issue is that the listed OS version for the VM is changed to Other (32-bit) during the transfer process, which seems to change the boot support which VMware ESXi provides to the VM. To fix this, please use the procedure shown below.

1. If needed, launch VMware Fusion 8.x Professional and connect to the ESXi server in question
2. Make sure the affected ESXi-hosted OS X VM is powered off
3. Open the VM settings for the affected ESXi-hosted OS X VM
4. Click on General

Screen Shot 2015 12 15 at 9 23 17 AM

5. In the General settings, verify that the VM is set to Other (32-bit)

Screen Shot 2015 12 15 at 9 20 58 AM

6. Click on Other (32-bit) and change the OS to Apple Mac OS X 10.10 (64-bit)

Screen Shot 2015 12 15 at 9 55 00 AM

7. When prompted, click the Change button to confirm that the OS should be Apple Mac OS X 10.10 (64-bit)

Screen Shot 2015 12 15 at 9 22 06 AM

8. Verify that the OS is now listed as Apple Mac OS X 10.10 (64-bit) in the General settings.

Screen Shot 2015 12 15 at 9 22 11 AM

9. Close the VM settings
10. Power on the VM

The VM should now boot successfully.

Screen Shot 2015 12 15 at 1 11 10 PM

  1. Marco
    January 19, 2016 at 11:48 am

    Thanks for this info. It got me puzzled…

  2. July 22, 2016 at 5:15 am

    Thank you! Did the trick.

  3. drbob
    November 8, 2016 at 4:06 pm

    Greetings, just tried pushing a 10.12 image to ESXi 6.x. As expected was changed to to 32bit. I changed to 64bit and the machine proceeded to boot. However, when finished was shown a circle with a slash – Thoughts?

  1. No trackbacks yet.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: