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Create a VHD of an existing hard disk RRS feed

  • Question

  • Hi,

     

    I have an real machine runnning that i want to move to an Virtual server. Is it possible to create an vhd file of the harddisk of the running machine so i don't need to reinstall everything?

     

    grtz Dave

    Monday, April 21, 2008 8:01 AM

Answers

All replies

  • What you want to do is a Physical to Virtualization conversion, otherwise known as a P2V. There are third party tools to do this as well as Microsoft's System Center Virtual Machine Manager (SCVMM). A new, updated version of SCVMM compatible with Hyper-V will be released in summer 2008.

     

    P2V can be either online or offline. Online tools point to a running physical machine. SCVMM has an onlne P2V tool. Offline tools require that you shutdown the physical machine.

    Monday, April 21, 2008 10:51 AM
  • Just to elaborate on what John Paul Cook wrote -

    1) If you search these forums for P2V you should find some fairly detailed instructions for various P2V methods

    2) I personally have had pretty good luck using System Center Virtual Machine Manager 2007 to P2V to Virtual Server 2005, then manually migrating from there to Hyper-V.

    thanks

    Martin
    Monday, April 21, 2008 1:01 PM
  • All that being said.

     

    There is a feature in Hyper-V that allows you to convert a physical disk to a VHD.  Now, your mileage may vary as for this VHD to be bootable it is mounted to your VM as an IDE device.  Therefore if it is running as a SCSI drive today then you will have to change the drivers in your OS.

     

    No, it isn't as simple as conversion tools but it is an option available to you today.

     

    The requirements for doing this is:

    The drive must be mounted to your Hyper-V host.

    You have the time to modify drivers in the Host OS.

     

    To perform the conversion:

    Select New- -> hard disk

    Choose your disk type

    specify name and location

    on the Configure Disk page of the wizard select the physical disk that you attached.

    click next -> finish the wizard and wait patiently.

     

    Now, mount the VHD to a VM to perform any driver modifications and then mount properly as IDE 0 (match the boot device order of your physical box) to allow it to boot.

     

    Monday, April 21, 2008 4:53 PM
  • You could also use one of the Windows Backup utilities that outputs a VHD (Windows Server Backup for example)

     

    However, most P2V tools remove all of the driver pain.

     

    Tuesday, April 22, 2008 3:34 PM
  • All of that being said - using SCVMM to perform the P2V is a fully supported path, and also highly recommended for ease of use.

    Tuesday, April 22, 2008 11:52 PM
  • SCVMM

    What are the additional things that we can do through this software.
    Is this a free application?
    Can we connect multiple Hyper-V machines in different machines and manage through one console?
    Wednesday, July 16, 2008 5:42 PM
  • System Center Virtual Machine Manager. Only the beta is free. It can manage multiple Hyper-V servers through a single console.
    • Marked as answer by David Shen Thursday, July 17, 2008 7:31 AM
    Wednesday, July 16, 2008 6:23 PM
  • cant you manage multiple hyperv servers through Hyper-V Manager (vista sp1) anyway?
    Thursday, July 31, 2008 11:58 AM
  • Yes, but you can only manage the virtual servers on 1 machine at a time. That may be fine for your needs if you're only running virtual images on a single physical server. System Center Virtual Machine Manager will let you manage all of the virtual machines in your virtual environment, as well as doing other things like the P2V conversion, and moving virtual servers between servers doing a "Quick Migrate", which basically suspends the virtual server, which causes everything in memory to be written to disk, then moves the image to the new location and brings it back online.
    Tuesday, August 12, 2008 1:54 PM
  • Dear everyone,

    I have finally discovered / invented a P2V that JUST WORKS! :-)

    It just keeps on working too. I'm migrating all my client SBS, stand alone, domain server boxes etc. to Hyper-V.

    No HAL problems! It just works. Its on my website. Enjoy!  I sure am having fun.

    http://easterndigitalsoftware.com/p2v/p2v.htm

    Cheers,
    Ring0

    KeBugCheck(42);
    Friday, September 19, 2008 1:38 PM
  • Ring0 said:

    Dear everyone,

    I have finally discovered / invented a P2V that JUST WORKS! :-)

    It just keeps on working too. I'm migrating all my client SBS, stand alone, domain server boxes etc. to Hyper-V.

    No HAL problems! It just works. Its on my website. Enjoy!  I sure am having fun.

    http://easterndigitalsoftware.com/p2v/p2v.htm


    This is good work, but I offer a different perspective in this thread: http://social.technet.microsoft.com/Forums/en-US/winserverhyperv/thread/677d651a-dcbd-4e14-b6a4-53043205656a

    • Marked as answer by David Shen Monday, September 22, 2008 1:56 AM
    Saturday, September 20, 2008 2:18 AM
  • I thought you might find this post useful.

    Hyper-V: Disk2vhd Free Physical Disk Conversion tool
    http://msmvps.com/blogs/jeffloucks/archive/2009/10/08/hyper-v-disk2vhd-freephysical-disk-conversion-tool.aspx
    SBS MVP
    • Proposed as answer by Jeff Loucks Wednesday, November 25, 2009 3:22 PM
    Wednesday, November 25, 2009 3:14 PM
    • Proposed as answer by Jeff Loucks Wednesday, November 25, 2009 3:21 PM
    Wednesday, November 25, 2009 3:20 PM
  • All of that being said - using SCVMM to perform the P2V is a fully supported path, and also highly recommended for ease of use.

    I have read this all over.  Have you actually tried a scvmm on a small business server domain?  System Center wants to do more than manage virtual systems, it wants to manage all of what SBS is designed to manage - reporting, updates, client machines, etc. System center wants AD configured so it can run the show.  If you install System Center on a SBS domain you're going to have to make some decisions about which system will manage the domain, not just for the conversion but after the conversion also.  I think, at best, this will be confusing for the typical small business customer.  It is NOT easy to use System Center VMM to convert a small business server domain.  So, far, for me, it would be easier to take the system down for the weekend then go the system center route - on a SBS domain.

    When you research this, you see Virtual Machine Manager and don't even see System Center mentioned, it appears that there is a an independent version of system center containing only VMM - this might work as good as it it supposed to as it wouldn't want to control updates, etc before you can get to the p2v process but, at least in my testing, I haven't found an idependent version of VMM - am I missing something?

    • Proposed as answer by Jeff Loucks Monday, April 26, 2010 4:09 PM
    Monday, April 26, 2010 2:28 PM
  • In an SBS environment SCVMM is not the right solution. Far too much startup time. Try Disk2VHD which does work.

    You may want to shut down some services but it is not required. Secondly, I would recomend you put 1 VHD per drive letter. This means running the tool several times I beleive.

     

    • Proposed as answer by Jeff Loucks Monday, April 26, 2010 4:09 PM
    Monday, April 26, 2010 4:09 PM
  • Jeff,

    I've tried out Disk2VHd, seems to work great when the physical disk is less that 127gb.  On the system I've been testing, I was able to use disk2vhd to get the c drive virtual and I could boot it.  On this physical box there is a raid10, 272gb drive seperated in to 4 partitions.  I ran disk2vhd the same way you suggested, on each drive letter, but it tried to create a 272gb drive for each.  When I try to mount these converted drives there is corruption, whether I try to mount in a VM or using Windows 7 to attach the vhd, either way the conversion doesn't appear to be successful on disks larger than 127gb.

     

    Monday, April 26, 2010 4:16 PM
  • KF,

    In my expereince, You have to run the tool seperately for each drive lettter and check the right option. If you use this process it should work. The only time I have seen corruption is when there is a OEM partition on the box and that drive is marked as active.

    You have to then go through the process of removing the OEM partition and marking the C: Drive as active. Search SBSFAQ for the technique how to do this.

    Jeff Loucks

    • Proposed as answer by Jeff Loucks Tuesday, April 27, 2010 11:50 AM
    Tuesday, April 27, 2010 11:50 AM
  • So, I have gone on and on about SCVMM and issues with SBS environment, what I totally failed to see is that SCVMM is not just a component of System Center or System Center Essentials. 

    Not sure if I just totally missed it or if the info is cloudy, but either way, after being instructed that SCVMM is in fact a standalone tool, I have it running and I am current performing a P2V.  First I will run this on a workstation, then I'll test it on a Server.

    Disk2VHD does work very well on Workstations though!  I've run this with a few machines prior to Windows 7 upgrade - pretty cool to have the old computer still there for a user to access just as it was.  I have not been successful using Disk2VHD on the SBS system I'm testing.  

    So, I'm hoping SCVMM will turn out to actually be the solution -as Mike Sterling posted.

    Tuesday, May 18, 2010 1:31 PM
  • I`m trying to make a VHD at my Windows XP using disk2vhd tool, but it fails. I suppose that this is a VSS issue and I’m thinking how to resolve this.

    My question is: Can I make “offline” p2v conversion using disk2vhd or is there any way to turn off VSS for conversion process?

    Can I connect my HDD with XP system to Windows 7 machine and run disk2vhd to convert attached drive? Does it create a valid VHD with XP?

    Tuesday, April 10, 2012 12:05 PM