VMware ESX 3.5 and nVidia MCP55 SATA Controller (usbid: 10de:037f)

After installation of VMware ESX 3.5 on a SunFire X2100 the machine always faulted with a root-fs error.

Looking at the VMware forums, I found a post by rpartmann who provides a script to solve this issue[1].

With the help of his script I found the relevant steps to fix this issue for me:

  • Boot into troubleshooting mode (there the SATA controller works).
  • go to /etc/vmware/pciid
  • edit sata_nv.xml
  • As last entry before </vendor> I added:
    <device id=”037f”>
    <vmware label=”scsi”>
    <name>MCP55 SATA Controller</name>
  • then I had to rebuild the PCI-ID Table:
  • regenerate the boot-filesystems:
    esxcfg-boot -r
  • reboot

Then I could start without problem on my nVidia SATA chipset.

You might need to do the same procedure after an update of VMware. Haven’t been there so far.

[1] http://communities.vmware.com/message/1011087#1011087