Resizing XP Guest VMWare images

This is my first wordpress post, since deciding to move over from blogger. It turns out that resizing a vmware virtual hard disk isn’t quite as I’d first imagined. On my ubuntu (hardy) host, I backed up the whole image first (always a sensible thing to do!) and then ran the vmware server vdisk manager, passing the virtual disk and the new size on the command line. It ended up looking something like this:

t4@wmdev:~$ sudo vmware-vdiskmanager -x 36Gb <path-to-file>.vmdk

Then I downloaded an ISO of the GParted live CD and mounted it in the host. Then I added a line to the .vmx file to specify a boot delay (so that it’s a bit easier to get into the bios at boot time):

bios.bootDelay = "3000"

Then all that’s left is to reboot the vm, press F2 during setup to enter the bios, change the boot order to look at the DVD/CD-ROM drive before the HDD, save changes and reboot.

Finally, during reboot, the GParted live CD asks a bunch of questions about your display and/or keyboard settings. It’s fairy safe to just take the default, but if you’ve ever screwed around with you X config before, this stuff should look pretty routine any way. Once you’re booted into GParted, the process is no different from resizing an image in your regular host environment. Simple.

All that’s left is to finish installing all the windows junk I need to work with from time to time. <sigh>

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