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Old 02-16-2014, 09:42 PM   #1
gentisle
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Is It Possible to Virtualize an HDD & Run Said Image Under VirtualBox?


Hi All,
A relative has an old computer that has some stuff on it he doesn't want to get rid of. I believe it's running Win98, and I think it's a 486 or Pentium I. Is it possible to take an image of that hard drive, load it under VirtualBox and run it as if it were on the older computer? (I suspect the answer is yes, but I haven't figured out how to do it.) Or either I'm thinking it's more difficult than it really is.

Is it as simple as creating a new Win98 VBox, and using the image as a CD/DVD iso to boot from? Thanks
gentisle
 
Old 02-17-2014, 12:06 AM   #2
syg00
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Nothing is every that simple ...
It's called P2V (physical to virtual) - use that in a search with win98 or "migrate windows". The fora at vbox have whole sections just for this (tutorials, rather than just Q&A).

Haven't done it, but should be non-destructive, and you can play around. May have issues with the M$oft/OEM registration and maybe the NIC.

Last edited by syg00; 02-17-2014 at 12:39 AM. Reason: tutorial comment
 
Old 02-17-2014, 01:09 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by syg00 View Post
May have issues with the M$oft/OEM registration and maybe the NIC.
Win98 had no such validation controls.
 
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Old 02-17-2014, 02:49 PM   #4
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You wouldn't use a cd as an image. You'd normally create a virtual hard drive.

It would be best to use a P2V app that fixed the hardware change.

A VM reports to the client some set of software copies of real hardware. Your current hardware is not those devices most likely.

One way to do this would be to use some clone software like Clonezilla. Then create a new vm client with similar hardware to the original. ISA and maybe nic if you can. Then boot to clonezilla iso/cd on the client and transfer over the image. Release the iso on reboot and see if you can boot even to safe mode. May have to add in drivers or such. You are now in a pickle of sorts if you don't easily have working knowledge of the vm and how to transfer data with no virtual nic for example. You'd have to install vm tools to share folder or cut and paste across host to client.

One could use dd or other tools even file based to copy the original data.

I did this a very long time ago on windows 98. I think I used norton's backup to create a virtual hard drive and then either ran it under virtualpc or converted it under qemu.

Saying all that. You also have other options like reactos or even dosbox or wine to run the remaining apps in linux.
 
Old 02-18-2014, 10:26 AM   #5
gentisle
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syg00
Quote:
May have issues with the M$oft/OEM registration and maybe the NIC.
I figured that Windows would boot up looking for new/different hardware and fix that, or that I could copy the VBox drivers to the HDD before creating the image. Thanks, I was looking for a way to find out myself, and I didn't know there was a name for it.

jefro Thanks, as syg00 said,
Quote:
Nothing is every that simple ...
I figured it might take a while, but thought it would be a fun learning experience, and allow for extended use of the software. And that being successful at it could come in handy later.
 
Old 02-18-2014, 04:29 PM   #6
jefro
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I meant ever.

Make a clone by some method shouldn't harm unless you get the image backwards.

One can use ntbackup also. Might need to get a set of boot floppy or cd image to apply it back to new vm.

Last edited by jefro; 02-18-2014 at 04:31 PM.
 
Old 02-19-2014, 11:58 AM   #7
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Quemu/kvm can use raw images (created with dd or whatever, you can even nc it over network to another computer with a basic live cd), no fancy stuff required. Now the problem is getting the windows installation to boot.
I did this with Windows 7 and it worked, i dont know how it would work with 98.
Heck, you can even use the REAL hdd with qemu/kvm (did this also with Win 7)- that is, if you have the hardware that you can put it in.

The best thing about this is that it isnt a destructive process so you can play around and experiment.

So you can do this:
Obtain a raw image of the hdd in question by either putting it in your computer and dd it to an image or if you can boot the other machine from a live cd that has nc (its preinstalled in probably any distro), nc the hdd over the LAN to your computer and there use dd to create an image.

Install qemu/kvm and virt-manager (this is a very very helpful tool, akin to virtualbox' interface), create a virtual machine, preferably emulating the CPU of the old computer (the rest of the h/w might be a bit more complicated to replicate though).
Attach the hdd image to the vm and boot it and see if it works...

Last edited by gradinaruvasile; 02-19-2014 at 12:07 PM.
 
Old 02-20-2014, 12:20 PM   #8
gentisle
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gradinaruvasile: Thanks.

To all: I think I've got enough info to start this. So I'm ready to give it a go.
gentisle
 
  


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