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carltm 11-22-2009 12:21 PM

converting a windows xp VMware virtual host for use on VirtualBox
 
Here is a quick guide to importing Windows XP virtual machines
created in VMware into a VirtualBox environment.

If possible, uninstall VMware-Tools from the virtual host
before shutting it down. You cannot uninstall VMware-Tools
from a Windows virtual host that is not running on VMware.

Stop VMware services and set it to not start automatically.
Or you can uninstall VMware. Just be certain that you will
not run VMware and VirtualBox at the same time.

Download and install VirtualBox.

To see the current settings:
Code:

VBoxManage list systemproperties
If you want to change the default directories:
Code:

VBoxManage setproperty hdfolder /path/to/vmxfiles
VBoxManage setproperty machinefolder /path/to/xmlfiles

Create the virtual machine:
Code:

VBoxManage -q createvm --register --name MyHost
VBoxManage -q modifyvm MyHost --memory 256 --boot1 disk --nic1 bridged
VBoxManage -q modifyvm MyHost --ostype WindowsXP
VBoxManage -q modifyvm MyHost --bridgeadapter1 eth0
VBoxManage -q modifyvm MyHost --hda /path/to/MyHost.vmdk
VBoxManage -q modifyvm MyHost --dvd /usr/share/virtualbox/VBoxGuestAdditions.iso
VBoxManage -q modifyvm MyHost --vrdpauthtype external

Note, the following command is required to be run if the original
installation of Windows was on real hardware or a VMware host.
Otherwise it is not recommended.
Code:

VBoxManage -q modifyvm MyHost --ioapic on
The first time you start the VM you will want access to the
console. You can only have access to single VM's console on
port 3389 of the server at a time. Make sure port 3389 is
available before running this.
Code:

VBoxHeadless --startvm MyHost
Use an RDP client such as rdesktop or MSTSC to connect to the
server. Be patient waiting for the mouse and keyboard to
respond. Windows needs to discover the new hardware. Cancel
any driver updates, since you will be installing new drivers
shortly.

After Windows finishes setting up, browse to your cdrom drive
and run VBoxWindowsAdditions.exe if it doesn't start automatically.

If you hadn't uninstalled the VMware-Tools package, you'll need
to update the driver for the network card. Change it to the
"AMD PCNET Family" driver. If you use dhcp or limit access to
your network by MAC address, run ipconfig /all and note the
new MAC address. Update any required dhcp or network settings,
then reboot.

Now is the time to configure video mode and similar settings.
Set up and test remote access by RDP. Once you have it working,
shutdown the virtual host. From now on, use this command to
start the virtual host, which will leave port 3389 on the server
available for other VMs if needed.
Code:

nohup VBoxHeadless --startvm MyHost --vrdp=off >/tmp/MyHost.log 2>&1 &

w3bd3vil 11-23-2009 08:33 AM

The latest version of VBox supports vmdk's out of the box.
You just point and click ;)

canyonbreeze 12-01-2009 10:40 AM

Keep in mind that when doing this Windows may think the 'hardware' appears sufficiently different that it will want to be reactivated. Each key has a limited number of activations. Run a copy of your virtual machine instead of the original in case you lose the activation.

carltm 12-05-2009 12:24 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by canyonbreeze (Post 3775813)
Keep in mind that when doing this Windows may think the 'hardware' appears sufficiently different that it will want to be reactivated. Each key has a limited number of activations. Run a copy of your virtual machine instead of the original in case you lose the activation.

Actually I didn't have any issues with this. Since I was running
VirtualBox on the same computer I had been running VMware on and
I selected hardware that was identical, the hardware in the VM
didn't appear to change.

Even if it had, it's just a matter of re-activating Windows, which
isn't a problem. I do agree with your point about making a backup
first...to me that goes without saying.

canyonbreeze 12-07-2009 10:22 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by carltm (Post 3781029)
Even if it had, it's just a matter of re-activating Windows, which isn't a problem.

I did have this happen. There are a limited number of times a Windows Key can be activated. Unfortunately when I switched it from VMWare to VBox I could no longer activate XP with the original key.


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