When you map a virtual disk and its associated volume to a drive on the host system, you can connect to the virtual disk without opening a virtual machine.

About this task

After you map the virtual disk to a drive on the host system, you cannot power on any virtual machine that uses the disk until you disconnect the disk from the host system.

Important:

If you mount a virtual disk that has a snapshot and then write to the disk, you can irreparably damage a snapshot or linked clone created from the virtual machine.

Prerequisites

  • Power off all virtual machines that use the virtual disk.

  • Verify that the virtual disk (.vmdk) files on the virtual disk are not compressed and do not have read-only permissions.

  • Verify that the virtual disk is unencrypted. You cannot map or mount encrypted disks.

Procedure

  1. Select the virtual machine and select Virtual Machine > Virtual Machine Settings.
  2. On the Hardware tab, select Hard Disk, click Utilities, and select Map.
  3. On a Linux host, select the Mount in read-only mode check box in the Mount Disk dialog box.

    This setting prevents you from accidentally writing data to a virtual disk that might be the parent of a snapshot or linked clone. Writing to such a disk might make the snapshot or linked clone unusable.

  4. Browse to a virtual disk (.vmdk) file, select it, and click Open.
  5. Select the volume to map or mount and select an unused drive letter on the host system.
  6. Click OK or Mount.

    The drive appears on the host system. You can read from or write to files on the mapped virtual disk on the host system.