VMWare ESXi 3.5: Creating an ISO Image from a CD/DVD-ROM

I always use ISOs in the datastore as CD/DVD devices in my virtual machines. Tonight, I had to make images of my Windows 2008 DVDs but because my tiny laptop doesn’t have a DVD/CD-ROM build-in, I had to rely on my ESXi servers to create the ISOs. Creating an ISO in ESXi is as almost easy as creating one in Linux — the only thing that presents a small challenge is VMware’s use of an unconventional device path for the DVD/CD-ROM. Ultimately, I used VIC (VM->Properties->CD/DVD->Host Device) to find the name of my device, which turned out to be “/vmfs/devices/genide/vmhba0\:0\:0

After opening up the SSH port on ESXI by using this tutorial, I created an ISOs folder in the datastore, placed the DVD in the drive and, finally, created the ISO by issuing the following command:

dd if=/vmfs/devices/genide/vmhba0\:0\:0 of=/vmfs/volumes/datastore3/isos/win2k8EEx64.iso

Chrissy is a Cloud and Datacenter Management & Data Platform MVP who has worked in IT for over 20 years. She is the creator of the popular SQL PowerShell module dbatools, and holds a number of certifications, including those relating to SQL Server, Linux, SharePoint and network security. You can follow her on Twitter at @cl.

Posted in Linux, VMware
2 comments on “VMWare ESXi 3.5: Creating an ISO Image from a CD/DVD-ROM
  1. NiTRo says:

    Nice trick Chrissy, thx !

  2. Alan Peery says:

    Thanks, this saved me a lot of digging. I had been looking in /var/log for this name, but ESXi 4.1 didn't seem to be logging this name into the messages file…

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