VMware 5.5 Enable guest Nested hypervisor - "Hardware_Virtualization Warning"

Posted by Aruna Lakmal on 7:33:00 PM with No comments
I came across with this while I was building a test environment for my testings on Dell R610 server. First of all I was doing my own research before I go and build the VMs straight away. I was read and scratching tons of blog posts and I found below recommendations for the nested virtualization. 


  • Nested 32 bit VMs - Intel VT-x or AMD-V is required
  • Nested 64 bit VMs - Intel EPT or AMD RVI is required
Also, you need to verify that your hypervisor is truly support for your nested hypervisor feature. To do that you might need check this in the "Managed Object Browser" aka "MOB" in your hypervosior.You can read more about "MOB" from here
Copy and Paste the below url on your browser and you can search "nestedHVSupported" , note the boolean value right next to the feature. Value should be true if it truly supports to the above Intel and AMD options.

This is the URL which you can access the mob "https://<your hypervisor IP>/mob/?moid=ha-host&doPath=capability" 

This is the out put and my hypervisor truly support to the nested virtualization



Ok, now we know that my hypervisor is supported to the nested ESXi capability and it's time to move on the nested ESXi deployment. I started to install the ESXi and I encountered with the below "Hardware_Virtualization Warning" (I'm not going to show the steps to install the hypervisor here) 


At this point I selected "(Enter) Continue" to continue the hypervisor installation as I don't wan't stop or go back to the installation process. Don't worry, I will show you how to fix this later in this post. 

Once you install the hypervisor successfully as a VM complete the management IP configuration and try to deploy a test VM as a nested VM in your Virtual Machine hypervisor. You will be getting an error saying hardware is not supported to your VM to power on.

To fix this I have added " vhv.enable = "TRUE" " parameter to the .vmx configuration file. To do this power down the nested ESXi and connect to your base hypervisor from a SSH session and move in to your VM folder. 

Here I have moved in to my "ARESXi6-04" folder and find the files inside the folder. 


Check whether there is any parameter similar to this in your vmx configuration file


Open the ".vmx" file from the vi editor to add the parameter (you can manually download the vmx file and upload it later after you adding the parameters). 


Add the " vhv.enable = "TRUE" " parameter at the end and save the file


Check whether the parameter has been added to the file 


That's all, now we can run our nested test environment and we can deploy the VMs in the nested hypervisor. 

Addition to this ... 

You will need to enable the "Promiscuos mode" in your hypervisor to run the nested ESXi for your test environment 


Select the Guest operating System as "Other (64-bit)" Name it as ESXi6 


Enjoy your nested hypervisor...
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