Is there an easy way to convert a hard drive to a vm?

I have a client's old PC (busted caps and such on motherboard) and I have tried to use Vmware's P2V without success.  It gets to 91% and fails - although the PC does not error out when running.

What is the easiest way to convert an OS on a hard drive to a VM WITHOUT running the old PC?  Remember that Vmware's P2V is failing when installed and run on the client's PC.

I also tried using Acronis True Image Echo Wrokstation 9.5.8115 to create an image to import usinf Vmware's Workstation 7.0, but Vmware's Workstation said it did not recognize the format of the file (Acronis validation says the file is not corrupt).

Any ideas?
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vmwares p2v utility (Physical to virtual)  is a free down load from their site.
if you put the drive in a usb converter you can boot a virtual machine from the usb drive in vmware workstation.  You can then work with it/ convert it etc.  I know you can do this because i use vmware workstation to install compact flash based firewalls in this manor.

hope this helps
The Acronis route is probably the method I'd use personally. I'd open a ticket with Acronis Tech Support, since their Echo Workstation is meant to create a working file. Have you checked your copy of Acronis is the latest build version? You can get updates on their website when registered.

Also as a backstop, if you can wield a soldering iron, you might find you can replace the blown caps easily. I've done it many times. Not the solution you were looking for, but one to keep in your list if ideas to try if all else fails.
If using VMWare's standalone converter for the P2V there are several services that can be shutdown to increase the possibility of a successful conversion.
I'd just move the hard drive to a different pc, then use the p2v utility.
VMWare's P2V?? That is not the same as VMware-converter-all-4.3.0-292238.exe, is it? Have you tried this? Set up the old drive using a usb kit and convert to your local drive? DOH! sorry Ross
Does Acronis Image file only work with VMWare Server rather than VMWare Worskstation? I'm sure I read that somewhere, but can't find it now.
Have you tried taking your good acronis image and then use the vmware standalone converter to convert this to a useable format?
Luciano PatrãoICT Senior Infraestructure  Engineer  Commented:

Here is an article do how to P2V Windows Servers.

In this article i use the cold migration, but you can also use the same tasks using VMware vConverter Standalone.

The pre tasks before P2V is very important to have a 100% success. Follow the tasks article, and see if fix you problem.

For using you Acronis image(if is a good image):

You need to use the vConverter Standalone to import that image.

Run the vConverter then choose "convert Machine", then select the source type "Backup image or third-party Virtual Machine".

After this you convert that image to your VMware Host


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cerkseesAuthor Commented:
BestWay: Thanks for the link.  I'll try it when I get home.

I actually got the P2V to make an image and I created a VM using the image as the new VM's hard drive, but now it is asking me to re-activate XP and the client has no clue what serial was used by his last IT person to validate XP Pro when he upgraded this Dell from Windows 2000.

I am so through with this.  I think this will be the last year that I do networking for small businesses.  They don't listen.  They don't consider ROI - it's always about the purchase price and not the long term costs.  And, they let everything run completely into the ground before calling.

Even when on an SLA, they will fall behind on their payments, run up huge bills that you have no option but to allow payments on.

I've had it with these people.  I don't know what's next for me....but it ain't this.
Luciano PatrãoICT Senior Infraestructure  Engineer  Commented:

Welcome to IT business :)

If you are P2V a OEM license, then this Windows license is not sported in a P2V. You cannot change a OEM license(not legally).

If not, if the client has volume license agreement he can use one of that.

cerkseesAuthor Commented:
I started my small business (networking support for small businesses) in 2003.  I have loved the technical side of things - 20 years as a programmer/analyst before this business - but I hate all of the hand-holding, ignorant business decisions (like spending $990,000 for a boat to play with on the weekends, but bitching about spending $400 for a new PC tower) and I'm tired of chasing people to get paid.

Screw 'em.  They can't run their business for free and neither can I.  Either people can pay at the time service is rendered or they can call somebody else.  Seven years of these people is all I can stand.  

I do have an idea for a niche computer repair business - but they would have to bring it in (or pay us to come get it) and a cc would be required up front.  A few guys have approached me about coming to work for me in that business model, but I just want a break right now.

Luciano PatrãoICT Senior Infraestructure  Engineer  Commented:

Many people thinks that own a small IT business, or working as a freelancer is easy. Nothing is easy, and nothing is for free.

This is why in most of my projects is 50% on front, and the rest when i deliver.

cerkseesAuthor Commented:
Just what I needed!
cerkseesAuthor Commented:
I eventually had to do a repair install to change the OEM license to a VLK license because the VLK (as BestWay said) will not work in Vmware.

As the VM was already requiring a key, this was needed anyway.

I can't wait to be done with this job.
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