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We have a VMWARE system that was set up a year ago for one of our projects. It consists of an enclosure with 3 servers (2 ESX 3.5 servers and a VCenter server) and a storage module.

We also have lab manager 3 installed, and the LM is controlling a number of the VMs that run on the ESX.

We have no need for the LabManager anymore and wish to get rid of it. Problem is, it's controlling a couple of mission-critical VMs that we cannot afford to lose and now it appears that those VMs are somewhat shakily backed up (we weren't able to do a "bare metal" restore to another VM from backups).

I was digging around in lab manager for a couple of days and i just don't see any option to make lab manager "release" the virtual machine so that it can be directly controlled by the VCenter server. As soon as I "undeploy" a configuration or a machine in LM, the Vclient loses sight of it, and I found no way to regain it.

Now i'm afraid that if i simply detach the hosts in LM and uninstall it, the VCenter wouldn't be able to use those critical VMs, and then, as we say in ebonics - 'we be screwed'...

Anyone has any advice?

p.s. i combed over the installation guide and the user guide for LabManager. It makes everything seem so easy and safe, but gives no specifics or contingency plan advice for what happens if things dont go by the book...

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up vote 1 down vote accepted

Have you tried making a Clone of one of the VM's? Then shut down the original managed VM and just power up the clone.

In a worst case scenario you could use VMware Converter to make another copy of the VM that is not managed by Lab Manager.

That said it seems like it should be possible to release a VM but I'm not familiar enough with Lab Manager to be able to say whether that is true or not.

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Well, the saga is over. I don't know how, but the LabManager lost contact with one of the ESX hosts, and all the machines that were on it became "unavailable" to the LM, and somehow became regular VC machines. The other machines were less important and we just reinstalled and reconfigured them. I'm not really happy about how it came out (if we have to do this again we will be in the same hole) - but it works now, and i guess it's good enough. – V. Romanov Mar 4 '10 at 10:10

IF you just do a power down of the VM but leave it deployed it can then be controlled through vcenter client.

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