How to remove a Hard disk or RDM from a powered on virtual machine
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How to remove a Hard disk or RDM from a powered on virtual machine


Article ID: 341654


Updated On:


VMware vSphere ESXi


  • Unable to remove hard disk / RDM while a virtual machine is powered on.
  • Unable to power on a suspended virtual machine.


VMware vSphere ESXi 6.5
VMware vSphere ESXi 6.7
VMware vSphere ESXi 8.0
VMware vSphere ESXi 7.0.0


A locking mechanism ensures that no two virtual machines (VM) can access the same disk and perform I/O at same time. This mechanism prevents hard dirsks from being removed from a powered on VM.

Removing an RDM from a powered on running VM is dependent on the Guest OS.  Refer to the OS vendor for guidance on performing hot add/remove of an RDM.


To remove a hard disk or RDM from a virtual machine, the VM must be powered off.
  1. Power off the virtual machine.
  2. Right-click the virtual machine and click Edit Settings.
  3. Select the Hard disk you wish to remove.
  4. An X icon will appear on the right side of the selected line (DO NOT select Remove files option).
  5. Click on the X icon to remove the disk.
  6. Press OK.
For information on migrating a RDM between virtual machines, see Moving an existing RDM to a different virtual machine

Additional Information