Viewing the World in Binary

ESX – Orphaned VM



Login to the host where VM was last running.

  • vmkfstools -D /vmfs/volumes/datastore/<any dir to save>    // will dump the messages information in /var/log/vmkernel.
  • cat /var/log/vmkernel | grep owner

The above ‘cat’ command will throw something like ‘44444444-55555555-6666-00166666666‘, check the latest owner message.

The bold portion is the system uuid.

The following command will print out the system uuid when run on each of the ESX hosts:

  • esxcfg-info | grep -i ‘system uuid’ | awk -F ‘-‘ ‘{print $NF}’

Compare the ‘cat’ command output with ‘excfg’ command output, Identify host which is owner of the locked process. Run the following command on the identified host to list the process which is holding up the vm hostage:

  • ps -elf | grep <hostname i.e virtual machine name>

If you get back the process number which is holding up the file, kill the process and thats it.

This never worked for me :D, process state (ps) commad did not show any process with the ‘vmname’. I tried deleting the files from virtual center server console and it deleted everything except the vmdk file. A quick VMWARE Communities lookup indicated resoultion as rebooting the ESX host. Next day I tried deleting the directory and vmdk file, It Worked!! So there was some thing holding up the file and released it overnight.


October 22, 2008 Posted by | ESX-VMware | | Leave a comment