ESXi Server died, trying to retreive OS


Overclocked Like A Mother
Hi all,

Have an esxi server with 2 virtual OS running on it.

The actual machine, mobo I think, has crapped out.

How can I retrieve the images from it? Can I setup another machine with vmware server on it and slave one of these mirrored drives and move it?




Woah.. I'm still here?
Staff member
Political User
no, you can't do it that way as esx will have formated the drives as VMFS and the regular VMWare server won't be able to natively read the VMFS volume to even see the VMDK files of your guests.

You could go about setting up the vmfs-mount utility in windows/linux to mount the vmfs volume so you can pull the virtual machines off, you may still run into problems as the virtual machine formats/hardware may not be compatible between ESX and VMWare server.

I would probably recommend bring up another ESX host and mounting the drive there and importing the machines into the new host (or fix your current one).

On a side note, this is the reason I generally advocate shared storage with ESX environments..


Overclocked Like A Mother
Thanks, Fitz.

So if I understand you correctly, if I setup another machine, drop one of the mirrored drives into that machine, then it should fire up the esx?

Don't want to chance this until I have a better understanding of the repair setup.

Thanks again,



Woah.. I'm still here?
Staff member
Political User
if you build an identical machine in terms of hardware/mem/etc.. you technically should be able to drop the drive in as primary and have it boot.. but I still wouldn't go that way.

Build out a brand new esx host with a different drive, add the old drive.. if this is ESXi v4, it *should* automatically detect the drive and the vmfs volume on the old drive and mount it for you (you may need to run a rescan on the storage adapters on ESX - otherwise, google how to mount the vmfs volume from the old drive in the new esx host), import vmx files to new esx host.

Umm... you didn't use extents on the old drive did you?

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