Moving VMWare Virtual Machines to Synology

This post was last updated on December 19th, 2021 at 10:20 am

One of the reasons that I enjoy having a Synology DS920+ around is that that I can use it to experiment with virtualization. In this experiment, I’m going to move a virtual machine that I configured through VMWare’s Fusion which is running on my Mac laptop.

This is just a blank Windows Server 2019 VM that has nothing installed on it.  I just needed a virtual machine to have some “meat” to it but it isn’t something that I care about in the event it gets trashed.

VM Bundles

When creating a virtual machine through VMWare Fusion, the files associated to the virtual machine are grouped together in what is called a “bundle”.  The bundle represents a the package that is the virtual machine.  We can see this by looking at the information on the file, as shown below.  This is for a blank Window Server 2019 VM that I had created.

In this case, I’ve actually already moved it to my Synology via an SMB folder share.  I have a “VMs” folder on one of the volumes and that’s where I wanted to move the bundle to.

Moving the Bundle

So moving the bundle to the Synology was pretty straight forward.

  1. Create the folder on the appropriate volume on the Synology
  2. Move the physical bundle from your Mac to the SMB Share
  3. In VMWare Fusion, do an Open
  4. Browse to the VMBund on the share on the Synology
  5. Select the appropriate bundle

Gotchas

In my case, I’m accessing the virtual machine over my local WiFi connection.  I’m using an Amplifier HD router which has been very stable for me while providing good bandwidth.  However, that being said, the virtual machine is slow.  The compute is happening on my local laptop but the physical VM files are located across the local area network on the Synology.

Even though it’s definitely slower, I can function within the virtual machine without too much lag.  If you are on a busy network (like when my kids are gaming) your mileage will probably vary so take that into account.

Summary

Moving VM files around is a pretty easily accomplished.  In this case I just had to move the VMBundle from my local MacBook over to my Synology NAS and then open it within VMWare Fusion.  The performance isn’t the best, but it works for my experimentation.

© 2021, John Morehouse. All rights reserved.

The post Moving VMWare Virtual Machines to Synology first appeared on John Morehouse.

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