Had to get an old Physical SCO Openserver 5.0.7 Server V'd. The below is a rough step by step guide to remind myself more than anything. I know little about SCO and muddled through this with help from colleagues familiar with SCO and a bit of the old google magic. (Using ESXi 4.0.0 Update 2):


Perform a manual P2V of a running SCO Openserver 5.0.X

This is only possible if the Physical SCO Server is NOT using any physical serial cards or other hardware that will not be available in a VM.

Prepare VM

  • Create a blank VM on an ESXi Server 
                              with the following settings:

    • Single vCPU

    • Flexible Type Network Adapter

    • IDE Hard Disk

  • Boot the VM from a SCO install media .ISO. 
                              Thes can be downloaded from the SCO website:

    • 5.0.7 .ISO

    • Install SCO O/S (you will need a 
                                                         valid licence number and code.

    • Configure Networking. Flexible vnic 
                                                         adapter will show as an AMD PCNet-PCI Adapter Compatible


Backup Data
  • There are 2 methods to backup the 
                              physical server and restore the data onto the VM:

  • 1) Backup locally and copy cpio archives across to the VM

    • +*find / -print | cpio -ovfB | split -b 1024m - /u/backup.cpio*+

    • This will backup everything from /  down to 1Gb files () in /u named backup.cpioaa, backup.cpioab, backup.cpioac ...

    • scp /u/backup.cpio root@IP.OF.SCO.VM:/u*


    • This copies all generated archives across to the VM SCO server prepared above

    • Now restore the files with the  following command on the SCO VM:

      • +cpio -ivdmluI /u/backup.cpioaa,/u/backup.cpioab,/u/backup.cpioac...+*

This method requires sufficient free space on the physical server

  • 2) Copy the data straight across to  the SCO VM from the Physical Server

    • Run the following from the VM SCO  Server:

    • +*ssh root@IP.OF.PHYS.SCOSVR "cd / && find / -print | cpio -ovfB" | cpio -ivdmlu*+


Whichever method used will throw some errors about read only files. These will be configured during subsequent operations which relink the kernel - Don' Panic!!

Configure VM

Do not have both physical and VM

servers on the network at the same time from now on - SCO will detect a

duplicate licence

  • Configure networking

    • Remove Network Adapter from scoadmin network - This is the config for the physical adapter in the 
                                                         physical server and is no longer valid in the VM

    • Add in the vnic adpter (as above in Prepare VM step) and configure network address etc

    • Relink Kernel etc when prompted

  • Configure the Hard Drive

    • Run the following to add config for the virtual IDE hard disk:

    • mkdev hd 0 0

    • This will prompt for setting up a new disk. You want to answer everything so that only the bare config as 
                                                         added, but no work is done initializing this new disk. Answer the prompts as follows:

      • Continue? = y

      • HD 0 Config? = q

      • Partition Table? = q

      • Division Table? = q

      • Bad Track Table? = q

      • Preserve Additional Filesystems/divisions? = y

      • Manual Adjustments? = n

    • This will complete with an error  saying:

      • filesystem construction unsuccessful

      • This is good - it means the HD config was added without altering the contents of the disk

    • Edit /etc/default/boot:

      • Add the following to the DEFBOOTSTR  line:

        • disable=mdac Sdsk=wd(0,0,0,0)

        • so the line reads

          • DEFBOOTSTR=hd(40)unix swap=hd(41) dump=hd(41) root=hd(42) disable=mdac Sdsk=wd(0,0,0,0)

        • mdac refers to the HDD controller used by the physical Server. This can be found by running:

          • hwconfig | grep disk

        • and reading the ht=XXXX  value.

    • Now sync changes to disk and reboot:

      • sync;sync;sync;reboot




This has been tested on 5.0.7 from

an Acer Altos Server with Mylex AcceleRAID ctrlr