Do you know that you can create very large VMDKs with Linux sparse files ?
The result is a vmdk-format that can be used in a VM while it does not use the VMware standard vmdk format and so is easy to manipulate with dd for example.
Works on Linux hosts …
Create descriptorfile like this:
# Disk DescriptorFile
# Extent description
RW 17179869184 FLAT “8tb-flat.vmdk” 0
# The Disk Data Base
ddb.adapterType = “lsilogic”
Create flat.vmdk like this:
dd if=/dev/zero bs=512 count=1 seek=17179869184 conv=notrunc of=8tb-flat.vmdk
A vmdk like that uses very little diskspace after creation – way way less than a regular vmdk.
Dont know if they are longterm stable – I use them often and dont need them longer than a few days …
Advantage: super easy to partition / or format with the need of a VM – just use