Vmware converstion: physical to virtual

Hi All,

We are running Vmware Esxi 4.0 and want to convert a physical server to a virtual server. The physical server is in a datacenter (probably in germany) and the new server hosting the Esxi software is located here in the UK.

I have attempted to do this using VMWare convertor but without any luck, it transfers (takes about 24 hours to complete) but the machine then does not want to boot. Could someone give me an insight as to what this?

From memory dont event get a bios screen or if wee do it stops there! it does not really get into booting windows.

I should mention this is a windows 2003 machine with a domain controller and exchange 2003 with several hdds


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coolsport00Connect With a Mentor Commented:
"Billy"...someone else just posted this same issue on here a couple days ago, and no resolution had been found. I actually just underwent the same issue and my workaround was to do the conversion within vCenter instead of with the Standalone tool. The Standalone tool has worked for me, but for one of my servers, it wouldn't. I even spoke with VMWare support who offered no solution. They don't know why this is. Their comment was "this tool is just that...a tool. It may work and it may not". I believe that statement (or something close to it) is even in their documentation if memory serves.

The only other suggestion would be what "ryder" suggested...a different 3rd party conversion tool.

You can try to convert the virtual server by placing the VM in Germany.
Then try to start it and if it works with VMotion move the server in the UK.
billy_howardAuthor Commented:
Is VMotion a free product? since buying further software isnt possible right now.


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Do you get the Windows Server 2003 splash screen at all? If you do sounds like Windows doesn't have the correct storage driver.

How did you do your P2V conversion?
Get the free 30-day trial of Storagecraft shadow protect server http://www.storagecraft.com/shadow_protect_server.php
Or you can use other disk imaging tool like Acronis True Image, Symantec ghost, etc
Create a disk image of your physical server, the end result will .spf file
The resulting image file is actually compressed so hopefully overall size is smaller and you can ftp over to the other site quickly

Once the image has been transfered, you can easily convert them(the .spf files for each physical server) to VM using vmware converter,
dont forget to disable hardware related services prior doing the conversion, you will have the option to this in the vmware converter itself

You can use the Trial of VMotion
billy_howardAuthor Commented:
Thanks for the comments, there is no windows splash screen.

with regards to how I did this I used the converter and told it the esxi server details and it then converted and transfered the server to the virtual platform.

The only issue with using something like acronis is the other side is just esxi so unless esxi can do this? I would have issues surely.

You mean import and send the VM directly to esxi? yes for sure
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