OVA/OVF Import tips for Ravello Systems

Bottom line of this article: use .OVF format for your VMs

When importing OVA's from my local system to Ravello Systems I ran into an error. Which was strange because I had imported similar machines just a few days before. The error message was the following: 

Referenced disk/s do not exist:

Also see the image below:

Ravello OVA import error

If you want to investigate errors with the import utility and need to find out where to access the log files then open this URL on your local computer: http://localhost:8881/hello This will show a status web page containing a reference to the log file location.

It turns out that these machines where exported from the vSphere Web Client to an OVA. I remembered that the other OVA's I had imported where created from the Windows vSphere Client. So I exported the new virtual machines once more, now with the vSphere Client on Windows and after that it immediately worked as before. 

So when you have problems with importing an OVA into Ravello Systems use the Windows vSphere Client to export the VMs to an OVA. Or export your VMs as separate .OVF and .VMDK files from either the vSphere Client or the vSphere Web Client.

Importing machines from the OVF format is also more efficient because when importing an OVA the Ravello Import Utility first extracts the archive to your local disk. When it's a .OVF it imports it directly from where it is located.


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