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Migration from VMware Server Back to GSX Server or ESX Server Has Restrictions (4779429)

Details

I am trying to migrate virtual machines on a VMware Server back to a GSX Server or ESX Server and it doesn't work. Why not?

Solution

The VirtualCenter User's Manual states:
Migrating a virtual machine from an ESX Server or GSX Server to a VMware Server does not automatically upgrade the virtual machine to full VMware Server functionality. To do this you must go through the VMware Server Console.
Note: Once you have upgraded the migrated virtual machine, you cannot migrate it back to the original host.

Migration occurs between hosts on the same farm. Migrations between a GSX Server or VMware Server and an ESX Server host is supported only when the GSX Server host is version 3.1 or later, or the VMware Server host is version 1.0 or later, and the ESX Server host is version 2.1.1 or later.

These two statements require a rewritten explanation. The corrected text is:
  • Migration occurs between hosts on the same farm.
  • Migrations between a GSX Server host and an ESX Server host is supported only when the GSX Server host is version 3.1 or later and the ESX Server host is version 2.1.1 or later.
  • Legacy virtual machines, that is GSX Server or ESX Server virtual machines, can be migrated to a VMware Server host. These virtual machines can be migrated back to a GSX Server host or an ESX Server host, provided that the virtual hardware of the virtual machine is not upgraded through the VMware Server Console.
  • Virtual machines created on VMware Server cannot be migrated to either a GSX Server host or an ESX Server host.

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