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I have a VMware ESXi 4 server running on a 250GB disk, with a single VM on it. I would like to replace the 250GB with a new 2TB disk I now have. Which of the following is the best approach:

1) Use Clonezilla to clone disk to disk and then expand the partition that has the VM on it to the max size.

2) Use GParted to copy each partition on the source disk to the dest disk and manually install GRUB

3) Install VMware fresh on the new disk, then manually copy over the files that make up the VM at the filesystem level.

I'm attempting to do #1 right now, but have seen a warning or two like:

VMFS: Warning: LUN ID mismatch on .....

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up vote 5 down vote accepted

I recommend the fresh install method.

Because the VM consists of only a few files, it's easy to treat much like a file share disk, as opposed to a program disk with unknown dependencies. ESXi is easy enough to install that you ought to be fully upgraded in 1-2 hours.

Just back up the files, reinstall the latest version of ESXi and copy the files back in.

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+1 Should be fast and easy – Dave M Jul 13 '11 at 20:35
Would the LUN ID warnings give you any reason for concern? – wchrisjohnson Jul 13 '11 at 20:39
Only if you're seeing the warnings after a fresh install. – Dave P Jul 13 '11 at 21:24
When you say "backup the files", are you suggesting a vanilla *nix CP to do the "backup", or the vmware cli utility? Sorry to seem dense - not very familiar with ESXi, and I've heard some bad stuff can happen if you do a normal copy (cp)... – wchrisjohnson Jul 15 '11 at 4:14

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