11 Replies Latest reply on Dec 13, 2005 12:02 PM by KevinG

    Migration path from workstation 5.x

    jaks13579 Lurker



      Is there any way to use VM's that were created on workstation 5 on the current version of GSX. I tried just mounting one and got an error saying it was not supported.



        • 1. Re: Migration path from workstation 5.x
          RainerBrunold Hot Shot



          I depends of the kind of vm's you created in vmware workstation 5.

          If you created legacy types you can copy them to gsx and run them with just adjusting network, cdrom, floppy and things like that.

          If you created vmware workstation 5 machines it's not possible to transfer them to gsx. You need to reinstall them.



          • 2. Re: Migration path from workstation 5.x
            MartinAmaro Master

            You can clone or copy the vm and then converte into a legacy VM by


            open the MSDos command window

            and cd %systemroot%/program files/vmware/workstation 5/

            then run

            "vmware-vdiskmanager -r " direcotry of your non-legacy VM/non-legacy.vmdk" -t 1 "direcotry for the legacy/legacy.vmdk"


            Note: If your MV's path have spaces you must leave the quotes as the example above.


            There will be a few .vmdk files. open the first one (1k in size) with a text editor 9Note Pad) change


            ddb.virtualHWVersion = "4" to


            ddb.virtualHWVersion = "3"


            open workstation 5 remove the disk add the new disk that you just converted


            now open your .vmx file change

            config.version = "8"

            virtualHW.version = "4" to

            config.version = "7"

            virtualHW.version = "3"


            power on your VM you should see a legacy VM

            then move it to your GSX server.


            Or ghost the non-legacy VM and restore the image into a legacy VM on the GSX server.

            • 3. Re: Migration path from workstation 5.x
              Ninke Westra Novice

              Based on the post by AmaroM I came up with an even simpler procedure.


              1) clone the vm

              2) hexedit the first vmdk file for each disk and change ddb.virtualHWVersion from 4 to 3:


              ddb.virtualHWVersion = "3"


              3) edit your .vmx file and change config.version from 8 to 7, and virtualHW.version from 4 to 3:


              config.version = "7"

              virtualHW.version = "3"


              4) power on your VM you should see a legacy VM

              5) move the VM to your GSX server.


              This eliminates the vmware-vdiskmanager step which essentially only converted the monolithic vmdk to a split vmdk.


              After the above procedure GSX mentions that the CMOS is not compatible, and that a new one will be installed. After that, the VM boots just fine. However, the ethernet card does not work. Windows (guest OS) reportes that "This device cannot start. (Code 10)" in the device manager. Reinstalling VMWare Tools did not help.


              Did anyone else get their non-legacy WS 5.x VM to work properly under GSX 3.2 ?

              • 4. Re: Migration path from workstation 5.x
                Ninke Westra Novice

                That figures, 5 minutes after I post to the forum, I figured out the problem with the virtual ethernet card. I had to set the type of the adapter to vmxnet instead of vlance. Vlance seems to be the default in GSX. You can do this in various ways (vmware-console, etc), but I believe adding


                Ethernet0.virtualDev = "vmxnet"


                to the vmx file by hand will do the trick.


                I have now a 100% working VM created using WS 5.5 (non legacy mode) running in GSX 3.2.

                • 5. Re: Migration path from workstation 5.x
                  MartinAmaro Master

                  Good job.


                  You might want to post your question as answered and if none help then I would post your fix so others can benefit from it.




                  Message was edited by:


                  • 6. Re: Migration path from workstation 5.x
                    Tomahawk000 Lurker

                    I was able to accomplish this task using these instructions.  I moved a Workstation version 5 to GSX 3.2 .  Everthing seems to be working well.

                    • 7. Re: Migration path from workstation 5.x
                      LarryRe Enthusiast

                      I followed your instructions in this post and find that the files I get when the VM is converted are .vmdk files which are not recognized by GSX, GSX wants to see .vdmk files. Do I need to rename them or have I done something wrong?

                      • 8. Re: Migration path from workstation 5.x
                        jasonboche Champion

                        GSX uses .VMDK files as do all other VMware products.

                        • 9. Re: Migration path from workstation 5.x
                          jharper Lurker

                          Thanks, Ninke


                          The editing procedures worked ... no need to startup the VM under Workstation before moving to the GSX machine - just edit the vmdk and vmx and fire it up.



                          • 10. Cloning, snapshots and NIC settings for 5.x -> GSX
                            Dathan Lurker

                            Just a clarification note for those who see this post and don't know about cloning vs. copying and how they relate to snapshots: if you are running snapshots on your 5.x VM, do a full clone before using this procedure so that the snapshot history is not a part of the VM you are down-converting.  Otherwise GSX still seems to reject the files even though the version on the disk file is changed.


                            Also, note that you can change the NIC setting from vlance to vmxnet right in the settings for the NIC in the GSX UI.


                            Thanks for the process Ninke: it appears to work very well.


                            I'd love to know when GSX will catch up to the 5.x level -- does anyone have this info?



                            • 11. Re: Cloning, snapshots and NIC settings for 5.x -> GSX
                              KevinG Guru

                              Unfortunately, our policy prevents us from talking about features or timeframes for unannounced products -- sorry.