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VM of existing PC doesn't boot: winload.exe missing or corrupt (?)

Posted on 2011-09-30
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Last Modified: 2012-05-12
Hi. I'm trying to start a new virtual machine using Virtualbox. I opened a previously created .VHD image (based on a shadowprotect image that was converted to vhd using shadowprotect itself). The image was of a PC running Windows 7. I'm running Virtualbox on another PC. This is the error message I get when I try to boot the VM:

VM: winload.exe missing or corrupt
Anybody?
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Question by:sachaweb
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Expert Comment

by:Subhashish Laha
ID: 36892677
This error you are facing due to to incorrect BCD settings.

You can boot the machine with Windows 7 ISO and repair the BCD store by using the Startup Repair option.

Refer below link, try Method 1 and Method 2.

http://www.binarywar.com/2010/01/windows-server-2008-bootmgr-is-missing-error/
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Expert Comment

by:rindi
ID: 36892690
Have you tried the repair option like it is displayed on your screen?
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Author Comment

by:sachaweb
ID: 36904030
> Have you tried the repair option like it is displayed on your screen?

I wouldn't know how to install a Windows installation disc in a virtual machine.
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Author Comment

by:sachaweb
ID: 36904062
subhashishlaha said:
> You can boot the machine with Windows 7 ISO

What ISO? For that PC I have a recovery CD, followed by a Windows installation CD. Should I make ISO's of them? But then how should I boot from those ISO's? I never used VMs before and I'm concerned that this might take me a lot of time.

All I need to do is check a few settings in Outlook on a reformated computer. But the aim is in the future to be able to see how PCs were set up before they were formatted, sometimes this helps when not knowing where settings are stored.

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Assisted Solution

by:rindi
rindi earned 375 total points
ID: 36904080
You have to edit the properties of the VM inside your VirtualBox GUI, then under "Storage" add either the DVD drive or the iso image of the installation Disk of Windows 7. Then when you boot the VM you should be able to choose between the HD or Optical drive to boot the VM from using F12. This selection shows up only very quickly, so you have to make sure you have focus of the VM and press the key in time.
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Assisted Solution

by:Subhashish Laha
Subhashish Laha earned 125 total points
ID: 36904088
On machine settings, go to Storage and Add "IDE Controller" then Add "CD/DVD Device". You can then choose the HOST CD drive or ISO file of Windows 7 installation.
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Accepted Solution

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rindi earned 375 total points
ID: 36904117
You are saying you only have a recovery DVD, no installation DVD? That means you are using an OEM version of Windows, and I'm afraid OEM versions can't be moved to a Virtual Machine. OEM versions are bound to the hardware they were first activated on, and the license will first of all not allow you to virtualize it, and as you have seen it also won't work...

You need a full retail version of the OS for this to work, and as far as I know there is a further no-go, it has to be at least Windows 7 Professional to be allowed for virtualization. None of the home versions are allowed in such an environment. Thank m$ licensing...
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Author Comment

by:sachaweb
ID: 36923638
To Rindi about OEM not going into VM:

In (ten?) years, I don't remember ever having Windows on a PC otherwise than delivered by the manufacturer for that PC. So this would mean most laypeople like me will never be able to virtualize a machine??

What I have for this machine - 3 CDs ("for distrib. only with HP PC"):
- Disk 1 of 3: HP restore plus - start with this DVD for restore
- Disk 2 of 3: OS DVD - windows 7
- Disk 3 is language packs.

So is there no point in implementing your advice (and Subh.'s) on how to solve the initial issue?

I thought by this decade VMs would be easier to handle!

Sacha.
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Assisted Solution

by:rindi
rindi earned 375 total points
ID: 36923701
Some smaller manufacturers who build PC's like smaller PC shops will use retail M$ OS's and not OEM versions. So such installations can be converted to VM's provided they are also not home versions of the OS. But most manufacturer's use OEM installations as those are cheaper, and particularly the larger manufacturer's like HP, DELL etc. will always be OEM, so those you can't convert to VM's. If you want to use virtualization then you will need to buy retail and not home M$ OS's and install those as VM's.

VM's are also usually meant for businesses so the hardware can be consolidated, and in businesses you usually don't run OEM Windows, but rather Volume License Windows which are installed by that business when they get the PC. The PC either comes without preinstalled OS, or they just replace that installation with their Volume License version.

In your example above you definitely have an OEM version, or you wouldn't have the "for distrib. only with HP PC". So you can't virtualize your installed OS.

What is the reason you are wanting to Virtualize your OS in the first place?
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Author Comment

by:sachaweb
ID: 37494811
Hi. I'm very sorry I didn't respond to the latest comments but this is far too complicated for what I was trying to do. I think I already said this in this thread but now I'm "officially" abandoning this question.
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Author Comment

by:sachaweb
ID: 37494819
I actually don't find a button or something to abandon the question so please help me.
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Expert Comment

by:rindi
ID: 37495148
There is no "Abandon" button, as abandoning Questions is frowned upon at EE. As this Question really has been answered, as "with OEM this can't be done", you should accept those comments as the answer.
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