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Running ESX inside a virtual machine residing on an ESX host fails (1030283)



Running ESX in a virtual machine fails with errors.


Running VMware ESX in a virtual machine requires the outer virtual machine to be configured for running a VMware ESX guest operating system. You may not power on a virtual machine until the outer virtual machine is reconfigured.

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Running ESX inside a virtual machine residing on an ESX host is not a supported configuration. Running ESX in a virtual machine is supported only in Workstation 7.1.1 and Fusion 3.0 or later releases.

To run a nested virtual machine, the guest operating system of the outer virtua l machine must be set to ESX Server 4. That setting is available in VMware Fusion 3.x and VMware Workstation 7.x. It is not available in any version of ESX.

To set the guest operating system of the virtual machine:


  1. In Fusion, click Window > Virtual Machine Library.
  2. Select the virtual machine that is running ESX.
  3. Click the drop-down menu beneath the virtual machine's name (in the right-hand pane) and select VMware ESX > ESX Server 4.


  1. Select the virtual machine that is running ESX.
  2. Go to VM > Settings.
  3. Click the Options tab.
  4. Select the General settings.
  5. Under Guest operating system, select VMware ESX.
  6. Click OK.

Update History

05/01/2011 - Added instructions for changing the VM type.

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  • 37 Ratings