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Monday, 2 March 2015

vCenter Appliance - you really have run out of disk space - what can you do?

Okay, so we have actually run out of space.  And to recoup space, we need to add space so that the processes can run through the database and delete old data.

I could just reset the database but we've got SRM and backup products hooked into this so I can't just rip out all those settings.  It would be so much better if we could do this just like we often do on the Windows servers and just extend the disk.  So I did the following.

As vCenter was off-line, I went to host where the appliance would be.  We use DRS rules to ensure it will only ever be on one of two hosts - which makes it easier to find in this type of circumstance.

Use a direct console window on the vCenter appliance and login.  Presuming you have not done any tinkering around with your vCenter disk configuration, your database data will be held under 


and you will have a disk mounted under /storage/db

To check, type in

du -h /storage/db

You should see a result of a good few amount of gigabytes of under /storage/db/vpostgres

If so, type 


This will then tell you which device /dev/<something> on /storage/db  As I have already altered my configuration in the past, mine was /dev/sdc1

So now that we know the device, type in 

cfdisk /dev/sdc1

This brings up a little utility called cfdisk and it will be telling you the size in MB allocated to the disk that you want to extend.

So on the screen grab above you can see that cfdisk utility is showing us that /dev/sdc1 is over 300MB in size (this screen grab is post disk extension sorry!).  I do all this disk checking because I am a Windows person and not a Unix person and I need to double check!

Select Quit and then shutdown the appliance (web browser on port 5480 to your vcenter box and login and select shutdown).

Use the downloaded qparted ISO utility, present this as a CD to your VM.  And whilst you are there extend the disk you want to extend (you identified it by the size before remember...)   And now snapshot it.  You need to do it that way as you cannot extend a disk that has been snapshotted.

Then start the VM ensuring that you boot off the CD.  Boot it up, select your country, tell you want it to boot, use StartX and eventually you get a GUI.  On the top right of the window, you choose your device you want to extend, so I select sdc1, and it kind of looks like a Windows Disk Manager.  It tells me that the disk is that size and I can extend it be this amount of size.  So I take it to the max - I don't want to be here again any time soon!

Then go!

Give it a bit of time - it took a bit longer than I expected (again, my own experiences are normally Windows) but it got there in the end.  You can see the image above where it was processing it.  You can click details to have a look.

And some more details after it finishes.

I just clicked close, exited, and then shutdown the box.  Ensuring that I removed the tick so that the CD doesn't boot!  :-)

I then just started the Server up and ta-da!  Logging in on port 5480, the extra space was there.  Backup the now working server and then delete the snapshot.

Job done!

1 comment:

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