While deploying a vCenter Operations Manager appliance a few days back, I was hit by the following error message (towards the end of its deployment):

Failed to deploy OVF Package

Failed to deploy OVF package: The task was canceled by a user.

That was of course surprising given I didn’t cancel the task. Thinking it might be a glitch, I tried it again but the result was the same. Another thought was if the OVA was corrupt in some way. So, I computed the SHA-1 and MD5 hashes of the OVA file (using Microsoft File Checksum Integrity Verifier) and they exactly matched the hash values mentioned on the download site.

For the sake of completeness, I should mention that I was using vCenter/ESX 5.5 Update 2 but it looks more like a packaging problem, as discussed here and here (possibly by the same person). The solution involves extraction and editing of the OVF file to change the CD-ROM type. Judging by the comments afterwards, it seems like a reliable method of fixing the problem. However, I wanted to find an easier way and the following worked for me:

  • Extract the OVA to some accessible folder using an extraction utility e.g. 7Zip
  • Deploy the appliance using the normal OVF deployment method

Surprisingly, this method has worked for me a couple of times, without requiring editing of any files i.e. it somehow gets around the problem with the package, preventing its deployment. I used the exact same file to extract the contents and deployment worked fine after that.

Hope this helps!