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I thought for sure there was one that ran as a plugin with vCenter via the vSphere client.

Does this exist? Google-fu seems to bring up the Standalone free version only.

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Not to my knowledge - just the Free or Enterprise edition of the Standalone Converter are available now. I don't think there's any real advantage in having it as a Plug-In.

There was, however, a way to P2V using the vSphere Client back in the ESX 3.5 days. This was called the vMware Converter Enterprise Plugin Is this what you're thinking of? It appears to have been discontinued, but I can't find exactly when.

Update: This actually appears to have only been discontinued with ESXi 5.0:

http://www-01.ibm.com/support/docview.wss?uid=isg3T1012946

and here: http://communities.vmware.com/message/2144901

VMware removed the Converter from vCenter Server and only provides it as the Standalone version. One of the reasons was to be able to provide a single unique version of the Converter and be able to provide updates independently of vCenter Server.

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Excellent work, Danny boy. –  gravyface May 2 '13 at 14:43

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