Pants ! (or yet more fun with a Redhat P2V conversion)

Finally. The time has come for a migration of a venerable machine running Redhat ES4 to a virtual platform. I wrestled with this conversion before but ultimately was successful. Therefore repeating the process on the live server was hoped to be easier due to all the other work and testing that had been carried out.  The original adventure is documented here but the latest tribulations are worth mentioning.

1) When running the convertor on the Linux host via VNC remotely – beware keyboard bounce and take your time entering passwords. Make sure that you can ssh localhost and ssh ip.address.of.machine before starting !!

2) Beware the march of time – the target server from the migration is an ESX4.1 server – the convertor client is the most recently available for the Redhat platform and is 3.0.1. Basically the two are incopmpatible and so yuou get the following as detailed by VMware

When converting a Linux source to an ESX 4.1 host, VMware Converter 4.0.1 Standalone fails at 1% with the error: methodFault.Summary


  • When converting a Linux source machine to an ESX 4.1 host, VMware Converter 4.0.1 Standalone fails
  • The conversion fails continuously at 1%.
  • You see the error:methodFault.Summary
  • In the vmware-converter-agent.log file, located at C:Documents and SettingsAll UsersApplication DataVMwareVMware Converter EnterpriseLogs, you see the error:Failed to connect ISO to remote VM


This issue occurs when using VMware Converter 4.0.1 Standalone with ESX 4.1 hosts because Converter Standalone version 4.0.1 is not compatible with vSphere 4.1.
To resolve the issue, try one of these options:
  • Install the latest version of VMware Converter from the vCenter Server installation media and use this to convert to an ESX 4.1 target. VMware Converter 4.3 supports conversion to vSphere 4.1 environments.
  • Convert the source machine to an ESX host running a lower version of ESX and then migrate the machine.

For more information, see the vCenter Converter 4.2 Standalone Release Notes.

Great – will have to now use one of the machines freed up as part of the migration that this relates to to convert to and then migrate from – thanks guys 🙁


PS – some further points which may be of interest  to those converting RH machines although not re the .iso error


1. Failed: File is larger than the maximum size supported by datastore

Solution: Split up the files to different datastores, or use Thin instead of Flat so it only takes the space used and not the full amount of allocated space for a partition.

2. Failed: MethodFault.summary

Solution: Changed number of processors from 8 to 4, because my VM server only has one quad core processor.

3. Failed: Unable to obtain the IP address of the helper virtual machine.

Solution: Assign a DHCP or static IP to the “Helper VM Network” at the bottom of the configuration.  Edit this value.

4.  Failed: An error occurred during the conversion.   Error: Failed to clone the volume mounted on ‘/boot’

Solution: Add the DNS suffix to the Helper VM Network.  Also, I needed to add the IP address to the hosts.allow in my Redhat Linux of the Helper VM, that I assigned in #3 from above.


5. Error: Failed to clone the volume mounted on ‘/’

Solution: again this was a problem with the fact that the machine to duplicate had the security settings setup to block the helper VM.  I had to add the entry into the hosts.allow.  But I can see other potential problems with the firewall (i.e. iptables) where certain ports must be open.  Here is a link to vmware showing which ports to open.