An OVF package captures the state of a virtual machine or vApp into a self-contained package. The disk files are stored in a compressed, sparse format.

Required privilege: vApp.Export


In the vSphere Web Client, navigate to a virtual machine or vApp and select Export OVF Template from the All vCenter Actions menu.


In the Export OVF Template dialog, type the Name of the template.

For example, type MyVm.


When exporting an OVF template with a name that contains asterisk (*) characters, those characters turn into underscore characters (_).


Click Choose to browse to the folder location where you want to save the template.


Select Overwrite existing files if you wish to overwrite files with the same name on your desktop.


In the Format field, determine how you want to store the files.

Select Folder of files (OVF) to store the OVF template as a set of files (.ovf, .vmdk, and .mf) This format is optimal if you plan to publish the OVF files on a Web server or image library. The package can be imported, for example, into the vSphere Web Client by publishing the URL to the .ovf file.

Select Single file (OVA) to package the OVF template into a single .ova file. This might be convenient to distribute the OVF package as a single file if it needs to be explicitly downloaded from a Web site or moved around using a USB key.


In the Annotation field, type a description for the virtual machine.


Select the Enable advanced options checkbox if you want to include additional information or configurations in the exported template.

The advanced settings include information about the BIOS UUID, MAC addresses, boot order, PCI Slot numbers, and configuration settings used by other applications, such as VMware vShield.


Click OK.

If you type OvfLib for a new OVF folder, the following files might be created:




If you type C:\NewFolder\OvfLib for a new OVF folder, the following files might be created:




If you choose to export into the OVA format, and type MyVm, the file C:\MyVm.ova is created.