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need to copy VM files (vmdk etc) to usb disk for backup purposes. tried booting with partedmagic 4.9..but cannot access the vm files on disk. any thoughts?

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My junior admin found a great utility today called FastSCP from Veeam ( ). It's free, and it allows you to browse ESX(i) datastores. I played with the software for a few hours, and I was really impressed.

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Just use the VIClient/VSClient app, browse to the datastore and copy directly to the USB stick.

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I'm pretty sure he won't be able to see the usb stick using the datastore browser. – HannesFostie Apr 16 '10 at 7:45
He will if the usb stick is connected to the PC running the VSClient, I know as I tried it before answering. – Chopper3 Apr 16 '10 at 8:17

I mostly used the datastore browser to do this when I wanted to clone a VM, but here's a quick walkthrough to enable SSH access.

  • Use Alt-F1 to access console (you will need physical access to the machine)
  • Type the word "unsupported" (that's right, console access is not supported by VM for ESXi)
  • Login as root
  • vi /etc/inetd.conf and find the rule starting with #ssh and uncomment it. Save and quit
  • run /sbin/services restart and you should be good to go
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