Fix Corrupted VMDK Files in VMware

Data retrieval from a VMware disk involves accessing the storage directory where the virtual machine (VM) files are saved. These files are stored on a physical host system, which can be running Windows OS, Linux OS, or macOS.

If you encounter issues launching your virtual machines, the first step is to check the storage directory associated with the VM files. This directory is linked to a physical storage device that may require troubleshooting.

VMware utilizes the “VMDK” format to store its files. If a VMDK file is deleted, it will prevent the corresponding virtual machine from launching. Data loss can occur due to various scenarios, and if the VMDK files are among the lost files, it becomes a significant problem.

While VMware’s VDR (VMware Data Recovery) can be used for VMware recovery, newer versions of vSphere no longer support this utility. In such cases, an alternative solution is necessary. DiskInternals VMFS Recovery is a highly recommended alternative that allows you to retrieve lost or deleted VMware files, ensuring uninterrupted access to your VMs.

Key Features of DiskInternals VMFS Recovery

  • Supports reading VMware VMFS file systems
  • Capable of reading both healthy and corrupted VMFS drives
  • Compatible with vSphere and ESXi/ESX Servers
  • Provides a user-friendly step-by-step Recovery Wizard
  • Enables exporting retrieved files via FTP or saving them to another drive
  • Includes all features of DiskInternals RAID Recovery

DiskInternals VMFS Recovery is known for its ease of use and advanced features. It can recover various data formats regardless of how they were lost. The software offers two scanning modes to thoroughly search the selected drive and recover all data that was previously saved. The following guide explains how to recover corrupted VMDK files using DiskInternals VMFS Recovery.

How to Use DiskInternals VMFS Recovery

  1. Download VMFS Recovery, the VMDK recovery tool, from the official website and install it on a working Windows PC. The software is compatible with Windows OS versions 7.0 to 11.0 and supports Windows Server OS from 2003 onwards.
  2. Once installed, connect the disk containing the corrupted VMDK files you want to recover and launch VMFS Recovery. Tip: You can access the disk through SSH connections, iSCSI or Fiber Channel interface connections, or by booting Windows to ESX / ESXi from an external drive and then running the VMFS Recovery utility.
  3. The Recovery Wizard will automatically guide you through the process. Select the disk with the files and choose a scanning mode – Fast Recovery Mode or Full Recovery Mode. Fast mode is quicker, but Full Recovery mode provides a more comprehensive scan.
  4. Allow DiskInternals VMFS Recovery to scan the disk and locate all the files saved on it. After the scan, you’ll see a list of all the files, with deleted or lost files marked with a RED asterisk.
  5. You can preview the recovered files, but to save them to another storage device, you need to upgrade to the DiskInternals VMFS Recovery Pro version. If the files you want to recover are not found, you can consider using the DiskInternals Guided Repair Service, where an expert can attempt a full recovery of your files from the selected disk.

In conclusion

DiskInternals VMFS Recovery is an excellent alternative to VMware’s discontinued VDR utility. It provides users with the necessary tools to restore data from virtual machines and offers a remarkably intuitive and user-friendly interface.