A word about VMware Converter Standalone

Hi,

I'd appreciate a frank and open word on VMware vCenter Converter Standalone.
I've used it many times to convert easy small servers or workstations before.  I never managed to successfully convert any kind of a "real" machine online.  The only thing that I got were these "Unknown exception" messages and nothing to go by in search for the problem.  

Right now I am trying to convert a Windows Server 2008 (R1) 64bit terminalserver running converter on a Win7 x64 within a virtual machine on the ESXi 5.0 that is also target for the conversion.

Is this something even worth trying, or should I go straight to creating an image and converting from there the way I've done it before?

Thanks,
Ralph
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Ralph ScharpingDigital TherapistAsked:
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Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE^2)Connect With a Mentor VMware and Virtualization ConsultantCommented:
We use it daily.

Our Clients use it, it does work, but some servers can give you grief, and you may need to look at alternatives.

Its FREE.
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Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE^2)VMware and Virtualization ConsultantCommented:
if you have issues with 5.0, use the following method...

@paulsolov fellow EE Expert has suggested the following method:-

"If all else fails do the following as it has helped me over a hundred times when converter fails

1.  Download trial copy of Symantec Backup Exec System Recovery
2.  Install and take an image of the server
3.  Use VMware Converter to convert image (it knows it natively) to a VM"


the above method only works for 4.3.
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Ralph ScharpingDigital TherapistAuthor Commented:
Where is the converter log file they keep talking about?
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Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE^2)VMware and Virtualization ConsultantCommented:
Stored on the server, in All Users
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Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE^2)VMware and Virtualization ConsultantCommented:
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Ralph ScharpingDigital TherapistAuthor Commented:
Right.

The only real error I found was this:

 [04580 error 'Default'] Found dangling SSL error: [0] error:00000001:lib(0):func(0):reason(1)

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Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE^2)VMware and Virtualization ConsultantCommented:
completely normal all logs have that.
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Ralph ScharpingDigital TherapistAuthor Commented:
I retried the conversion now using the same parameters on the source-side, but chose not VMware infrastructure as target, but VMware workstation.  It started the conversion now and is currently at 15%.

Thus I surmise my problem is not my windows source server the way I thought, but my VMware target.

I am running converter on a virtual Windows 7 x64 running also VMware client.
On the same ESXi 5.0 resides the vCenter APP-VM.  
My Win7 running the converter has 2 LANs.  One is connected to the vcenter and the ESXi, the other to the production machines including the one I am trying to convert.

I am chosing the vCenters IP as target.

Any NoNos so far?
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Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE^2)VMware and Virtualization ConsultantCommented:
sometimes less errors using the ESXi server IP address
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Ralph ScharpingDigital TherapistAuthor Commented:
Won't accept that - says the host is managed an I am to use the management server's address.
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Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE^2)VMware and Virtualization ConsultantCommented:
oh yes, this has been changed with ESXi 5.0 under vCenter management, so you got no choices than to use vCenter.
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Ralph ScharpingDigital TherapistAuthor Commented:
Hmpf - so I gather this:

Mickey-Mouse-Software.  Try it - if it fails, try something else.
Is that about right?
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Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE^2)VMware and Virtualization ConsultantCommented:
Commercially if we are completing many P2V we use Novell Platespin Migrate. It has many advantages, but its not free.
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