Error during the configuration of the host: Cannot open volume: /vmfs/volumes/

I came across this error after setting up and FlexVolume on a Netapp filer and trying to connect to it from vSphere ESX host.

I had run through the wizard and made sure that each of the ESX hosts had read/write access as well as “Root” access to the export/volume but I continued to get this error:

“Error during the configuration of the host: Cannot open volume: /vmfs/volumes/270c64e8-cae0114b”

Originally I thought it may be that I had underscores in my export name as described in the Vmware KB article. I changed the export name to something without an underscore but still no dice.

It turns out even if you specify Unix security when creating the export, the Netapp filer will create it using NTFS by default! Why it sets the underlying security to NTFS on a NFS export with Unix security is beyond me. It may be the version of OnTap on our old dev filer (

To change this you need to do the following:

  1. Logon to your filer web management interface
  2. Expand “Volumes”
  3. Expand “Qtrees”
  4. Click “Manage”
  5. Click on the “NTFS” link next to the export you need to change
  6. Change the security style to “Unix” and then apply
  7. Go back to your host and try adding the NFS volume

I recommended getting familiar with this Netapp and vSphere best practices document as well.

  1. #1 by Rob on February 24, 2010 - 4:22 pm

    I had been looking everywhere for a solution to this error, your suggestion is just what I needed!

    • #2 by Ben Karciauskas on February 24, 2010 - 5:35 pm

      Hey your welcome. Thanks for the comment



  2. #3 by Tony L on May 18, 2010 - 9:46 pm

    Thanks Ben this was a lifesaver!

  3. #4 by Luis on June 14, 2010 - 5:08 pm

    Thank you very much! We had been trying and trying to figure out this one. What’s strange is that we have to Netapp Filers and on one, the volume we created showed up properly with the Unix security and the other showed up with the NTFS security! Have no idea why this would be.

  4. #5 by Trev on July 1, 2010 - 9:13 pm

    Appreciate you taking the time to post this… It saved me some time!

  5. #6 by Chris Ma on November 3, 2010 - 12:05 am

    Thanks for the post! I was racking my brain on this and found your post.

  6. #7 by Eric Bodenman on April 13, 2011 - 11:55 pm

    The default security style can be set by changing the options wafl.default_security_style to unix for future volume creations.

  7. #8 by Geediu on November 23, 2011 - 11:14 pm

    Exactly the solution to my problem – many thanks!

  8. #9 by Phil Berry on March 20, 2012 - 7:01 am

    Brilliant – Thank you i wasted all day on this

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