gordynor
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Contributor

Sharing a VM between Win & Mac?

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I was wondering... is it possible to create a VM in Fusion on the Mac and then copy it to a PC to run in VMWare? I'd like to set up a single VM and use it daily on my Mac Pro but have the ability to copy it to my PC laptop for when I'm on the road...

Thanks!

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asatoran
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Yes. It's breifly mentioned in (about half way down.) Basically just copy the entire virtual machine folder from the PC to the Mac. Or if you created the VM in Fusion, copy the vmwarevm package. When moving the VM, pathnames to ISO files and snapshots can be a problem between the Mac and PC. You'll have to adjust the path names in the .VMX file, if necessary. For the most part, I don't use snapshots for the VMs I need portable so I don't have much problems with path names. YMMV.

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asatoran
Immortal
Immortal

Yes. It's breifly mentioned in (about half way down.) Basically just copy the entire virtual machine folder from the PC to the Mac. Or if you created the VM in Fusion, copy the vmwarevm package. When moving the VM, pathnames to ISO files and snapshots can be a problem between the Mac and PC. You'll have to adjust the path names in the .VMX file, if necessary. For the most part, I don't use snapshots for the VMs I need portable so I don't have much problems with path names. YMMV.

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wila
Immortal
Immortal

Hi,

Yes you can. I use this as well.

If you are using VMware Fusion 2.x then the compatible windows VMware products are VMware Server 2.x, Workstation 6.5.x and Player 2.5.x.

You can use older/other VMware products as well, but these are compatible without having to make relevant/difficult changes.

Don't use local paths and my suggestion is to use 2GB split disks if you can as that makes the VM a little more portable (you can copy it over to a FAT disk and not get bitten by the 4GB filesize limit)

Let us know if you have any more questions.

If you want, then you can post the .vmx file to let us have a look if you need to make a change to make it more compatible (Probably not needed btw)



--

Wil

_____________________________________________________

Visit the VMware developers wiki at http://www.vi-toolkit.com

| Author of Vimalin. The virtual machine Backup app for VMware Fusion, VMware Workstation and Player |
| More info at vimalin.com | Twitter @wilva
gordynor
Contributor
Contributor

Thanks guys - this is great news!!

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gbullman
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Expert

I also move Fusion created VMs back and forth between my Mac and a PC running VMware Player, and it works fine. My Mac is a MacBook Pro and for whatever reason one of my VMs ends up with the Numlock key on when moving to my Thinkpad. I found a .vbs script to toggle the value of Numlock which I've created a shortcut to in Quick Launch, or you can use the On Screen Keyboard of Accessories->Accessibility to accomplish the same thing if you run into trouble.

As far as paths, I leave both configured in my .vmx files. When I'm on the Mac only /Users/my_login is valid, and when on the Thinkpad only C:\Documents and Settings\my_login\My Documents is valid. In each case the other is ignored so I just leave them there.

I run about 95% or more of the time on my Mac, but every now and then run them on the Thinkpad. I normally have them on a Firewire HFS+ external drive and copy them to a USB FAT32 drive to run them on the PC. Note, I did try an NTFS formatted drive for use on the PC, but copying them with NTFS-3G was just way too slow.

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gordynor
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sounds similar to what I'm planning. I have a Thinkpad X61... what do you use and how would you rate the performance of the VM between the Mac & Thinkpad? Does one run it faster than the other?

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gbullman
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Expert

I have a late 2007 MacBook Pro, 2.6 GHz Core 2 Duo, 4 GB RAM, and a T40 Thinkpad, 1.6 GHz Centrino, 2 GB of RAM. After everything starts up the Thinkpad is useable but certainly not fast. The MBP on the other hand is great performance wise. I run 2 VMs pretty much all day long every day and the performance of the VMs on the MBP is better than the physical Thinkpad running XP natively.

I haven't had an opportunity to run on more up to date Windows hardware. I think dual core is a big win for running VMs, since at least part of a core should be available for the host at all times.

Actually my Mac with the 2 VMs replaced 2 physical Wintel PCs. I need to connect into 2 separate VPNs each day and Fusion + the VMs is much more convenient than moving back and forth between machines.

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