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deploy mutliple VMWare XP workstation from one image

Posted on 2010-09-23
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Last Modified: 2012-08-13
I have installed ESXi and one XP workstation. I was wondering if there is a way to clone that XP workstation and add it as a new virtual machine on the ESX so I could easily have 4 of the same XP workstation without having to install them one by one
I tried creating a new VM from the existing XP image but then when I tried starting it I get an error saying that it can't access a file (being locked). If I checked the datasore I can see that it doesn't create a new image but just links it to the existing one and I believe that won't work
thanks in advance for your help
Gaetan
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Question by:odewulf
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by:GeneralTackett
GeneralTackett earned 150 total points
ID: 33746306
lets say you use vmware converter to convert your xp into an image for vmware workstation.. then you simply use converter to push it to esx 4 times..
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by:GeneralTackett
ID: 33746313
if you have a virtual machine if you simply copy the folder you now have 2 Virtual machines. and you can start both..
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by:BloodRed
BloodRed earned 150 total points
ID: 33746902
Do you have vCenter?  If so, right-click that VM and clone it to a template.  After that, right-click the template and deploy a VM from it to create clones.

If you don't have vCenter, there is no built-in way to clone the VM.  You can use converter to create new copies, or simply copy the files to a different directory and add the copied VM to inventory using a new name.  The problem with that is that all the copies will have the same filenames within their directories, which can become confusing.
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coolsport00 earned 200 total points
ID: 33747709
As mentioned above...the best way...if you have vCenter with ESXi, is to create a template. Create a XP VM as you want it, then right-click on the VM in vCenter and select Template -> Clone to template. From this template, you can then Deploy 4 VMs using the deploy VM wizard (rigth-click on the template and select 'Deploy virtual machine from this template'). That keeps the template in tact while deploying a new, pristine copy VM. If you use vCenter Converter Standalone, it will sysprep your VMs, which is a vital process if you're in a domain environment. If you simply copy your VM to other hosts, you will need to sysprep them, give them a different name, and if your source XP VM has a static IP you'll need to change the IP as well.

If you're using vSphere Hypervisor (free ESXi), your only solutions are 1. vCenter Converter, or 2. VM folder copy (then right-click the .vmx file on the destination host and select 'Add to inventory'). I believe you can also potentially use PowerGUI (http://www.powergui.org/index.jspa) to do this as well. I saw a presentation on it at VMworld...you can deploy numerous VMs very quickly, but I don't think it's granular, meaning like for your situation you want VMs on different datastores and on different hosts. I think the PowerGUI/built-in scripted way is such that they have to be on the same datastore, same host, etc. But, you may want to give it a look over.

Hope that helps.

Regards,
~coolsport00
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Author Comment

by:odewulf
ID: 33750001
thanks a lot I am going to try this tonight and let you know how it goes
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by:coolsport00
ID: 33750685
Great, keep us posted!

Regards,
~coolsport00
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Author Comment

by:odewulf
ID: 33762641
since I don't have vcenter, I used the converter and this worked perfectly. As you said I just need to update computer name, check IP address
thanks for your help
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Author Closing Comment

by:odewulf
ID: 33762644
since I don't have vcenter, I used the converter and this worked perfectly. As you said I just need to update computer name, check IP address
thanks for your help
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