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After migrating a virtual machine from ESX 2.5.x to 3.0.2, adding another disk file fails

Details

  • After migrating a virtual machine from ESX 2.5.x to 3.0.2, adding another disk file to the virtual machine fails
  • You see the error:

    Error msg: incompatible device backing specified for device 0

  • The hostd log contains messages similar to:

    Aug 24 15:14:57.486: vmx| Please select the version of the disk from which you are most likely to boot:
    Aug 24 15:14:57.486: vmx| Version 4 CMResource (IBM Content Manager .vmdk
    Aug 24 15:14:57.486: vmx| Version 4 CMResource (IBM Content Manager _1.vmdk
    Aug 24 15:14:57.486: vmx| Version 4 CMResource (IBM Content Manager _2.vmdk
    Aug 24 15:14:57.486: vmx| Version 4 CMResource (IBM Content Manager _3.vmdk
    Aug 24 15:14:57.486: vmx| Version 4 CMResource (IBM Content Manager _4.vmdk
    Aug 24 15:14:57.486: vmx| Version 3 /vmfs/volumes/44e5d0cd-dde63f58-55f1-0010181712b7/cmresource-h.vmdk

Solution

This issue may occur if the disks specified in your configuration were created by different versions of VMware software. The guest operating system installed on these disks may not properly recognize the underlying virtual hardware. The ESX host sets the virtual machine configuration to that of the virtual hardware version of your boot disk.
 
You must register the virtual machine.
 
To register the virtual machine:
  1. Log in as root to the ESX host using an SSH client.
  2. Run the command:

    # vmware-cmd -s register <full/path/to/vm.vmx>
Based on VMware KB 1002183

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