vSphere Replication fails with the error message “No Element 0 Column 1 found” during registration.

If you are managing VR environment for quite some time I am quite sure you would have come across this issue while registering VR via VAMI page. But a very few have managed to get past this issue.

This article is mainly to explain you the cause and possible solution to fix this issue.

The actual cause of the issue is due to a xml file being corrupted or turning null. The file mainly responsible to hold this information is ovfEnv.xml. It resides under /opt/vmware/etc/vami/. This file holds the vCenter related information like the FQDN/IP , thumbprint SSO token info etc. If this file is null replication appliance would not have sufficient information to figure out which vCenter server it was registered to.


Please keep in mind to validate below information that can lead to this issue.

  • Removing the host from vCenter inventory where the respective VR appliance was residing on.
  • Wrong DNS entry specified during configuration.
  • Powering on the VR appliance from ESXI host directly rather than turning on from the web client.
  • Incorrect FQDN entry under /etc/hosts file.
  • Failed upgrade of replication appliance.


After all the above points are validated and modified wherever applicable perform a hard power off and later power on the appliance.

Note: Rebooting the VR appliance would not take any effect to fix this. It needs to be hard power off/on.

Whenever you perform a hard poweroff/poweron of the appliance the ovfEnv.xml file would get refreshed and it would re-populate the information during the booting process.

In certain scenarios performing hard poweroff/power on more than twice has fixed the issue as well.


In spite of validating and performing above actions if you fail to succeed in re-registering the appliance or the xml file is yet bound to be null then you have to re-deploy the appliance from scratch.


If you need to make a note of the list of the VM’s along with the datastore information on target site you can collect those information from the VRMS database.

Note: Never ever login to the VRMS DB without taking a snapshot. It is always safe to have a preserved state before connecting to the database.

Take a SSH to the replication appliance. Since ssh is by default disabled for VR. Login via VM console and run the command.


Once executed, Connect via putty session and execute the below command to connect to VRMS database.

/opt/vmware/vpostgres/current/bin/psql -U vrmsdb

You will successfully connect to the database. TO get the list of VM’s and their respective datastore(replicated on target site) execute the below command.

Select name, destconfigfilesdatastoreuuid from virtualmachineentity;

Name                                    Destconfigfilesdatastoreuuid

VM01                                    599ffdb5-fdbe48bc-740c-000c2984ab74

VM02                                    599ffdb5-fdbe48bc-640c-000c2984ab75


To determine which datastore is associated with this UUID. ssh in to one of the ESXI host in the target site and execute the below command

esxcfg-scsidevs -m

mpx.vmhba1:C0:T0:L0:3      /vmfs/devices/disks/mpx.vmhba1:C0:T0:L0:3 599ffdb5-fdbe48bc-740c-000c2984ab74  0  Datastore1

mpx.vmhba1:C0:T0:L1:3      /vmfs/devices/disks/mpx.vmhba1:C0:T0:L1:3 599ffdb5-fdbe48bc-640c-000c2984ab75  0  Datastore2


So we basically have the required information to reconfigure the replication using existing seeds.

Note: Having a backup of the replication appliance would always be helpful as it would certainly have backup of ovfEnv.xml file.


I hope this article was helpful. Watch out for more.

Ritesh Shenoy
Hey, My name is Ritesh Shenoy working a Tech Support Engineer for VMware. Had an idea on blogging tasks faced on my daily basis which would ideally help other on their daily lives.

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