Thursday, October 13, 2016

Adding floppy for PVSCSI drivers when creating a VM in vCenter Web Client

Someone asked in a private slack channel if it was "just him" or can you really not add a floppy image when creating a VM using the Web Client. This is relevant any time you want to build a VM using the PVSCSI drivers so they'll always be available, even if VMware Tools is uninstalled.
The answer—at least with v6.0U2—is "no."
In this scenario, the vmimages folder won't expand; it offers the "arrowhead" showing there is content to be discovered within, but when you select it, you get no content...

Fortunately, there's a workaround: if you go ahead and save the new VM (without powering on) and then edit it, modifying the source for the floppy image, the vmimages folder will correctly expand and populate, allowing you to select one.

UPDATE: It turns out we were talking about two different Web Clients! My assumption was that we were referring to the vCenter Web Client, while the person asking was referring to the new(ish) Host Web Client.

The defect and workaround as I've documented it only apply to the vCenter Web Client. The Host Web Client will not behave correctly even in the workaround; this is a solid defect. There are other workarounds—use the C# client, copy the IMG file to an accessible datastore, etc.—but none are as good as the defect being eliminated in the first place.