If you ever need to resize a device on a Unix like system and are using LVM as the underlying mediator and ext2/3/4 as the file system, it can be done without a reboot. This is quite handy for ESX and other virtual machines. 

Before doing all that comes, please resize the “physical” device – in our case the virtual disk in ESX

Mind you, this only works if and when the “physical” disk is used by LVM as RAW device. You have to resize the partition (e.g. /dev/sda2), if the LVM resides on a partition. You can check this by issuing

# fdisk -l

Disk /dev/sda: 53.7 GB, 53687091200 bytes, 104857600 sectors
Units = sectors of 1 * 512 = 512 bytes
Sector size (logical/physical): 512 bytes / 512 bytes
I/O size (minimum/optimal): 512 bytes / 512 bytes
Disk label type: dos
Disk identifier: 0x000f06be

Device Boot Start End Blocks Id System
/dev/sda1 * 2048 2099199 1048576 83 Linux
/dev/sda2 2099200 104857599 51379200 8e Linux LVM
  1. First, we need to identify the resized disk. In our case, this is /dev/sdb

    echo 1 > /sys/class/block/sdb/device/rescan
  2. If you omit any flags, the LVM partition will fill the whole device

    pvresize /dev/sdb
  3. Here, the boundaries for the LV need to be set explicitly

    lvresize -L 35000 /dev/vg_appl/lv_storage
  4. File system resize can be once again done without any flags and it will fill the whole LV.

    resize2fs /dev/vg_appl/lv_storage