VMFS datastores serve as repositories for virtual machines. You can set up VMFS datastores on any SCSI-based storage devices that the host discovers, including Fibre Channel, iSCSI, and local storage devices.


You cannot create VMFS3 datastores in vSphere 6.x. Even though existing VMFS3 datastores continue to be available and usable, you must upgrade them to VMFS5.


Install and configure any adapters that your storage requires. Rescan the adapters to discover newly added storage devices.


  1. In the vSphere Web Client navigator, select vCenter Inventory Lists > Datastores
  2. Click the Create a New Datastore icon.
  3. Type the datastore name and if required, select the placement location for the datastore.

    The vSphere Web Client enforces a 42 character limit for the datastore name.

  4. Select VMFS as the datastore type.
  5. Select the device to use for your datastore.

    The device you select must not have any values displayed in the Snapshot Volume column. If a value is present, the device contains a copy of an existing VMFS datastore. For information on managing datastore copies, see Managing Duplicate VMFS Datastores.

  6. Specify partition configuration.



    Use all available partitions

    Dedicates the entire disk to a single VMFS datastore. If you select this option, all file systems and data currently stored on this device are destroyed.

    Use free space

    Deploys a VMFS datastore in the remaining free space of the disk.

  7. (Optional) If the space allocated for the datastore is excessive for your purposes, adjust the capacity values in the Datastore Size field.

    By default, the entire free space on the storage device is allocated.

  8. In the Ready to Complete page, review the datastore configuration information and click Finish.


The datastore on the SCSI-based storage device is created. It is available to all hosts that have access to the device.