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Locating a hosted virtual machine's files (1003880)

Purpose

This article guides you through the process of locating the files that comprise a virtual machine on a Windows or Linux host. These files include configuration files, log files, and virtual disk files.

For more information about this process on a Macintosh host, see Locating the virtual machine bundle in VMware Fusion (1007599).

Resolution

For reference, virtual machine log files are named vmware.log, configuration files have a .vmx extension, and virtual disk files have a .vmdk extension.

Determining the location of a virtual machine's files may differ between Windows and Linux hosts, depending on the VMware product being used and its version. Refer to the section that matches your product version and host operating system.

Note: For these procedures, results may not be possible unless you are logged in as a user with either Administrator rights, root access, or the user who created the virtual machine.

Locating VMware Workstation and VMware Server configuration and log files

For the location of the log and configuration files:

  1. Select the virtual machine from the VMware application window
  2. Click VM > Settings.
  3. Click Options.
  4. Click Advanced. Under File locations you will see Configuration and Log. You can find the files in those directories.

    Note: If the path to the log file is blank, the log file is in the same location as the configuration file.

For the location of the virtual disk files, look in the directory where the configuration (.vmx ) file is located. If there are no .vmdk files there, or you suspect that there are not enough .vmdk files to account for the number of virtual disks for this virtual machine, edit the .vmx file in a text editor. Search the file for all lines of text ending in .vmdk . Any virtual disk files that are not located in this directory have their full path listed on this line of text.

Locating virtual machine files on a Windows host

The default location for virtual machine files is the folder My Virtual Machines in the My Documents folder of the home directory of the user who created the virtual machines. If you are logged in as this user, you can:

  1. Select Start>Run. The Run dialog appears.
  2. Type %userprofile% .
  3. Click OK to see the home directory.

If you are still unable to locate the virtual machine files, you must search the host hard drive for virtual machine configuration files.

To search the host hard drive:

  1. Open a command prompt. For more information, see Opening a command or shell prompt (1003892).
  2. Enter this command:

    C:\>dir \*.vmx /s/p

This returns directory paths to all virtual machine configuration files. Based on the name of the virtual machine whose files you are looking for, use Windows Explorer to navigate to the location of the directory containing its .vmx file.

For the location of the virtual disk files, look in the directory where the configuration file (.vmx) is located. If there are no .vmdk files there or you suspect that there are not enough .vmdk files to account for the number of virtual disks for this virtual machine, edit the configuration file in a text editor. Search this file for all lines of text ending in .vmdk . Any virtual disk files that are not located in the current directory have their full path listed on this line of text.

Locating virtual machine files on a Linux host.

To determine the default location of virtual machine files for the product in use:

  • In VMware Workstation or VMware ACE, the default location of virtual machine files is the directory /home/username/vmware , where username is the user who created the virtual machine.
  • In VMware Server, the default location of virtual machine files is the directory /var/lib/vmware/Virtual Machines .

If you are still unable to locate the virtual machine files, you must search the host hard drive for virtual machine configuration files.

To search the host hard drive:

  1. Open a shell prompt. For more information, see Opening a command or shell prompt (1003892).
  2. Enter this command:

    find / -name "*.vmx"

    The results of this comand list all virtual machine configuration files. Search the results for the name of a virtual machine file you are interested in locating. The results also list the path to the directory where these files are located.
For the location of the virtual disk files, access the directory where the configuration file ( .vmx) is located. If there are no .vmdk files there or you suspect that there are not enough .vmdk files to account for the number of virtual disks for this virtual machine, edit the configuration file in a text editor. Search this file for all lines of text ending in .vmdk . Any virtual disks whose files are not located in the current directory have their full path listed on this line of text.

See Also

Update History

06/27/2011 - Removed Fusion as a product as fusion has it's own KB on the subject.

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