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VMWare - Unable to boot to a ISO

Posted on 2009-07-15
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Last Modified: 2012-05-07
Hello,
I am using the free version of VMWare server (version 1.0.8 build 126538) running on windows server 2003 SP2. I am needing to setup a VM to just hold a license manager for an application and have created a VM to run under window server 2003 web edition.

The problem I am having is I have a windows 2003 server web edition CD that is bootable from CD. I created an ISO image of this CD for installation on the VM (created using Nero and InfraRecorder). On the VM I add a CD device attached to the ISO image (connected at power on set to IDE 0:1 CD-ROM1). When I boot up the VM it is unable to boot up the CD image and tries a network boot up. I did set the startup options to boot to D first, and have tried hitting F2 to have it boot direct to CD. Regardless of what I do it fails to boot from CD, causing me an inability to install the windows 2003 server web edition on the VM.

Does anyone have any suggestions ont this? Am I creating the ISO incorrectly without boot options (even though the CD is bootable)? I have also tried creating a simple boot disk ISO and it fails the same way.

This is an urgent issue I need resolved - points - 500 for this one.
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Question by:JLManhattan
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jrlee1234 earned 200 total points
ID: 24860466
I had this happen recently and this is the process that I had to go thru.  I am not sure about Version 1 but this is what I did for 3.5.

First and foremost in the 'Edit Settings...' of the virtual machine make sure that the CD-Rom is listed in the hardware list and that the ISO is attached to that cdrom with it marked for 'Connect at power on' and 'Connected'.

Then under the 'Options' tab select 'Boot Options'.  put 3000 in the 'Power-on Boot Delay' field to allow you access menus and the bios on startup of the VM.  If you have the 'Force BIOS Setup' you can use that also for the BIOS part.

Click OK and then start VM

Enter the bios and change the boot order so that cdrom is at the top of the list.  Save and exit. You should now be able to boot from the CD.  If it still doesn't you should be able to hit the boot order key (cannot remember off the top of my head what it is but you will see as it is booting up now that the delay is set) on boot up to select the device to boot from.

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Author Comment

by:JLManhattan
ID: 24860579
Hi, thanks for the comment. I do not have 'Boot Options' under the options tab in this version of VMWare (the selections available under options are General, Power, Snapshot, Permissions, Startup/Shutdown with power on options only, and advanced). None of these appear to have a boot option as noted.

I have also edited boot options in the BIOS and can get to the CD boot option, it tries then goes straight to network boot, when it fails it gives me an error indicating no bottable CD floppy or hard disk found.

However, a collegue provided me an ISO image of windows server 2003 standard; I changed the ISO to thisone and see it is bootable on the VM without issue. Unfortunatly his predecessor created the file so we dont know what app was used to make the ISO that works (as I need the web edition). So with this in mind I dont beleive this is VM issue, more than likely something wrong with the method used to create the Windows web edition ISO.

Any other thoughts on the ISO creation so it is bootable?  I basically copied teh entire windows server web edition contents to a local folder, then crete the ISO based off those files using Nero and  InfraRecorder.
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by:jrlee1234
ID: 24860723
I have had success with WinImage ( http://america.winimage.com/download.htm ) which allows you to create boot images for ISOs.  It is shareware and is free.
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Assisted Solution

by:ryder0707
ryder0707 earned 150 total points
ID: 24861155
to really test the bootable capability of your cd is to try boot it up using a physical machine instead
i have a feeling that the cd is not properly created or the source cd itself is not good
you cannot just copy any folder and make it bootable, it doesn't work like that
try a free tool from http://cdburnerxp.se/ to create an iso image from a working bootable cd
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Expert Comment

by:nappy_d
ID: 24861926
Use nlite to make your iso. Go to nliteos.com

It will help you create an iso easily and stream any updates in if you so desire.
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Author Comment

by:JLManhattan
ID: 24864304
Thanks to everyone. I had to take this kinda old school to get it working. While I could not seem to get the ISO image to boot, I was able to boot to a floppy image, format the system drive and move on from there to install windows server 2003 web.

I will still try a couple of the approaches noted to create a bootable ISO and will note whos worked best.
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Assisted Solution

by:nappy_d
nappy_d earned 150 total points
ID: 24864329
Here is my URL to nlite http://www.nliteos.com/nlite.html
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Author Closing Comment

by:JLManhattan
ID: 31603773
Thanks to everyone. I am going to close this question as it is more of a ISO setup issue ratehr than a VM problem.
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