Virtualising Windows NT4 with Software Raid

Hi Guys,

Rather than repeating myself, please refer to this forum post I did at Ars Technica:

I have searched through this community, and it seems that windows software raid just does not virtualise. I do not wish to break the mirror on this computer as it is, quite sadly, a critical piece of infrastructure.

The box I need to I need to Virtualise:

Dual P2 300MHz


A Software RAID Hard Drive with 2 Partitions (one being the system partition)

Windows NT4 SP6a (although the VMWare converter keeps complaining that it doesn’t have this service pack)

What I have tried to do so far:

1. Ran the VMWare converter and tried to boot the virtual system... didn’t work (first blue screen in my Ars Technica post)

2. Rebuilt the Virtual C Drive from a Backup and tried to boot the virtual system... didn’t work (the second blue screen in my Ars Technica post)

3. Installed Windows NT on the virtual machine and tried to copy across the software, doing registry exports and imports to get all the settings correct. This... sorta worked, but the applications require usernames and passwords that just don’t exist in the fresh install of NT4.

4. This left me with an option I was SURE would work. The software RAIDed Hard Drive has 2 partitions, so I copied a recent C Drive backup onto the 2nd partition (as this was not being used) and then I edited the boot.ini to add an entry for the NT4 on the other partition, rebooted into the 2nd partition’s NT and then broke the software RAID on that partition. Then I used the VMWare converter to virtualise this new setup. Again... the Virtual Machine just failed to boot, giving me the exact same blue screen as the 2nd blue screen in my Ars Technica Post.

So, is it possible for me to Virtualise this machine WITHOUT breaking the software RAID for the 1st partition of this Hard Drive?

0 Kudos
3 Replies

The only successful way we have P2V'd a windows box with software RAID without breaking the mirror is to:

1. Use Ghost and image one of the drives (Disk to Disk)

2. Make a Ultimate-P2V boot CD can't remeber if it includes the TestDisk plugin if not add it

2. Boot the VM with Ultimate-P2V CD

3. Run TestDisk and change the partition type to NTFS

4. Reboot again with Ultimate-P2V CD inject the VM SCSI drives using the tool.

5. Reboot and all should work

0 Kudos
Hot Shot
Hot Shot

You say the machine is critical, how critical?

So critical you can never take it down?

I am just wondering why the reluctance to break the mirror?

Once you stop all you application services and break the mirror, you can shutdown and remove the second disk and keep it out of the picture,

You always have it there safe,

Attempt the conversion on the remaining disk.

0 Kudos

If you are on the East Coast of the US, we can P2V that server, no problem and 100% guaranteed. Send a private message if interested.

Ken Harbin

0 Kudos