Resizing an IDE virtual disk, part two

A long time ago I wrote this article about resizing an IDE virtual disk. I just ran out of diskspace on my Windows 7 VM and I needed to increase the disk. Unfortunately the Windows 7 VM had and IDE disk and the Web Client didn’t allow me to simply increase the size of the VMDK. So this is what I had to do, and yes I agree it should be easier than this.

  1. Remove the IDE vmdk from the VM
  2. Edit the “vmdk” file (can be found under cd /vmfs/volumes/<datastore_name>/<vm_name>/)
  3. Change ddb.adapterType from “ide” to “lsilogic”
  4. Add the IDE vmdk to the VM
  5. Change the size of the disk
  6. Remove the IDE vmdk from the VM
  7. Edit the “vmdk” file (can be found under cd /vmfs/volumes/<datastore_name>/<vm_name>/)
  8. Change ddb.adapterType from “lsilogic” to “ide”
  9. Add the IDE vmdk to the VM
  10. Power on the VM and “extend” the partition within Windows 7

There might be an easier way of doing this, and I guess using “vmkfstools -X” would also work, I just preferred to take this route instead as I knew it would work.

** note to self, don’t import W7 VMs with an IDE disk, it sucks **

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    1. Marcel says

      I’ve tried to use vmkfstool -X with an IDE disk and that works, but then the disk doesn’t function any more. So using the command-line is out of the question.
      My preferred solution (in ESXi) would be to change the storage controller into a SCSI Controller, vSphere 5 will automatically change the disk to use the proper SCSI Controller on power on and then you can increase the disk size without any problems.

    2. says

      Had this problem once, I followed a slightly different path however…
      I detached the vmdk, modified it with vi (changed ide to lsilogic) but the, I reattached the lsilogic vmdk to my vm. At first boot… nothing, no boot at all… I found out that sending “Ctrl-Alt-Del’ to the vm, reboots it ant TADA! it worked like a charm. I can’t explain why the vm doesn’t even bother me with the new disk/controller… it booted like it always been like this…

      Once tweaked this way, it’s possible to resize the disk on the fly, wich is what I wanted. I use a live linux distro to resize the partitions.

    3. Cris Mooney says

      Your steps worked perfectly for me using vSphere Client 5.0.0 Build 455964, VMware ESXi 5.0.0 Build 821926 to bump a 10GB XP Pro up to 15GB (used EaseUS Partition Manager 9.2.1 to increase NTFS boot partition in XP).

      Thank you!

    4. Tobias says

      I used vmkfstools -X and it worked fine to expand a XP system volume in ESXi 5.1.0.

      I used gparted from the systemrescuecd to grow the partition and NTFS.