Virtualbox : Export from VirtualBox and import to VMware ESXI

Version of software used:

  • VirtualBox 5.0.22
  • vSphere Client 5.1
  • VMware ESXI 5.1

Export to OVA/OVF

From VirtualBox export the virtual machine : "File" > "Export Appliance".

Then choose OVF 1.0 format and don't check the write manifest file box.

You now have a .ova file.

Edit OVF

VMware ESXI is not good at all to import virtual machine from other virtual manager.

So if you try to directly import your ova file you'll get an error message: The OVF package requires unsupported hardware. Details: Line 25: Unsupported hardware family 'virtualbox-2.2'.

To fix it, unzip the .ova file (ignore extracting error), go into the folder and edit the .ovf file.

Replace the following line:

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<vssd:VirtualSystemType>virtualbox-2.2</vssd:VirtualSystemType>

with:

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<vssd:VirtualSystemType>vmx-07</vssd:VirtualSystemType>

Note : if you didn't check write manifest file you won't have checksum problem, but if you did the easiest is to remove the .mf file. You can also re-generate the checksum sha1sum file.ovf and replace the value in the .mf file.

Import into ESXI

You can now try to import the VM:

  • "File" > "Deploy OVF Template" > Select the freshly edited .ovf (ot the original .ova)
  • You may get an error: The OVF package requires unsupported hardware. Details: Line 74: OVF hardware element 'ResourceType' with instance ID '6'. No support for the virtual hardware device type '35'.

To fix it, edit the .ovf file again. Go to the line mentioned in the error message and remvoe the whole item:

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<Item>
<rasd:AddressOnParent>3</rasd:AddressOnParent>
<rasd:AutomaticAllocation>false</rasd:AutomaticAllocation>
<rasd:Caption>sound</rasd:Caption>
<rasd:Description>Sound Card</rasd:Description>
<rasd:ElementName>sound</rasd:ElementName>
<rasd:InstanceID>6</rasd:InstanceID>
<rasd:ResourceSubType>ensoniq1371</rasd:ResourceSubType>
<rasd:ResourceType>35</rasd:ResourceType>
</Item>

That can be sound card, cd drive or some other optional drive.

Note : if you still want to use .mf file don't forget to update the checksum.

You can now try to import the .ovf again.

Some other weird errors can occur but I won't be able to help you more...

Note : if you use Guest Additions don't forget to change them (VirtualBox Guest Additions > VMware Guest Tools).

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