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When Internal Disks Can't Be Seen from the VIOS Installation Menu

IBM Support Q&A resolves a dilemma when a client ran into issues installing the PowerVM® Virtual Input/Output Server.

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A client attempted to install the PowerVM® Virtual Input/Output Server (VIOS). However, when going through the installation menus, none of the internal disks were visible.
 
A search turned up this IBM Support Q&A:
 
Here's a list of common reasons why the installation menu doesn't display internal disks:
 
1. VIOS partition does not have disk I/O controller.
Recommendation: Login to the VIOS management GUI (i.e. HMC, IVM, FSM, etc) and verify the VIOS has the expected disk I/O controller allocated in the VIOS partition's profile. For assistance determining what resources are allocated to the VIOS partition, contact your local GUI management support representative.
 
2. The disk isn't properly formatted for AIX/VIOS OS.
Recommendation: If the environment involves IBM i or was previously used for IBM i, it is possible that the disk may be formatted for IBM i OS. Ensure the disk is formatted for AIX/VIOS OS.
 
(This explanation references the IBM Support doc, How to Format i Drives to AIX Format for the Purpose of Installing VIOS.)
 
3. VIOS Install level is not compatible with the POWER system.
Recommendation: Verify the machine type/model supports the VIOS level you are trying to install. For details, refer to the system to VIOS maps.
 
4. Downlevel microcode.
Recommendation: Verify that the system, adapter and disk microcode are up to date.
 
It turned out that we needed to format the disks. Once we did so, we were able to install VIOS as expected.

Learn more about VIOS in Why You Should be Running VIOS 3.x.
 
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