encino
Contributor
Contributor

Quick Install question

If I already have Windows server 2008 R2 on the server I want to install VMware vSphere Hypervisor is there a way that the install will convert the existing OS into a virtual one or do I need to wipe it?

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12 Replies
Rumple
Virtuoso
Virtuoso

esx is a complete operating system,...you need to wipe it and reload...or another option is to use a trial of something like acronis or symantec backupexec server recovery to take an imageo f the server and then use vmware converter to re-import your Windows O/S again...

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DCjay
Enthusiast
Enthusiast

Rumple is correct.

I have same issue last early this year. This is what I did;

1) Installed VMware converter on the WIndows server.

2) Convert the local machine option to VMware workstation

3) Select my external drive as locaion for virtual machine.

After installing ESXi, you simple use VMware conert er to import the VM to ESXi.

I hope this helps

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encino
Contributor
Contributor

Nothing happens to the physical OS correct?  I can convert it and save the image on an external then wipe and install Vsphere when I have the time?  

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DCjay
Enthusiast
Enthusiast

Yes,

That is it.

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bulletprooffool
Champion
Champion

A P2V creates a VM copy of your physical host - it does not amend the host (other than installing the converter service), so if your conversion fails you are able to roll back to the physical host by powering off the Vm and powering up the physical.

If you are really stressed about it, you could use ESXi on a USB key and actually install it without any disks being in thephysical server (so remove the drives and install ESXi diskless), this means that if you decide to roll back to physical, you can just remove the USB and pop the dislks back in.

Good luck

One day I will virtualise myself . . .
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encino
Contributor
Contributor

Right now I do not want the phyical box converted.  I want to run the converter save that on a external drive and then over the weekend wipe the box install ESXi and import the file.

I need the physical box up for the week. 

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bulletprooffool
Champion
Champion

That's OK - you can run the conversion and in the final wizrd screen specify that the source machine should not be shut down and the VM not started up.

You can then test the VM offline and at the weekend, shut down the physical and boot up the VM. the only problem is that changes made during the week will of course not be available on your VM.

Also, I presume you have an ESX/ESXi host to run the conversion to. If you are converting to a 'workstation', you'll need to import the VM to ESX , which will take as long as your conversion did in the first place!

One day I will virtualise myself . . .
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encino
Contributor
Contributor

I downloaded the conversion util but I am a little confused.  What type am I saving it as?  I do not see and ESX option.  I see workstation or server.

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DSTAVERT
Immortal
Immortal

I would convert it to a Workstation VM. I would install VMware workstation and bring up your converted server to make absolutely sure it will run as a VM. Best to iron out any issues before you wipe anything. You might consider also doing a traditional backup as well. When you do have ESXi installed then you can run Converter again against the Workstation VM and import it into ESXi.

-- David -- VMware Communities Moderator
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encino
Contributor
Contributor

So I have to convert twice?  What would I convert the workstation to?  I thought if I chose workstation I can then import it to ESXi

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idle-jam
Immortal
Immortal

you did not see the ESX option has you have not installed it, you will need to select workstation, save it to the USB drive, and then reimport from workstation format to ESX later when you have install ESX.

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DSTAVERT
Immortal
Immortal

Converting to the VMware Workstation format will allow you to test first. VMware Workstation can be installed on any Windows or Linux desktop machine. Converting twice isn't so bad. Converter works quite quickly.

-- David -- VMware Communities Moderator
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