How to virtualize an existing windows XP PC with VM Ware?

Hello everyone,
       I have a PC with many application install, including  software for PLC communication.
What are the option for virtualizing this PC?
What are the advantages or desadvantages of virtualizing from an Image?

I do not have time to make a fresh Virtual Machine with XP and install all the applications.

Thank you
iscivanomarAsked:
Who is Participating?
 
Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE^2)VMware and Virtualization ConsultantCommented:
The advantages, it's fast, easy, and free to do.

The disadvantages, any faults currently with your current PC (image/OS), will also be converted, and will occur in the Virtual Machine.

Also if the current OS License is OEM (e.g. OS was pre-installed by the hardware Vendor), it will not Activate on the Virtual Machine.

Use VMware vCenter Converter Standalone 5.0 to create a Physical to Virtual Conversion.

see my EE Article for Hints and Tips

HOW TO:  P2V, V2V for FREE - VMware vCenter Converter Standalone 5.0

HOW TO: Improve the transfer rate of a Physical to Virtual (P2V), Virtual to Virtual Conversion (V2V) using VMware vCenter Converter Standalone 5.0

Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEM) versions

Note: Physical-to-virtual hard drive migration of a Windows installation is a valid function for customers with Software Assurance and full retail copies of Windows XP, Windows Vista, and Windows 7. Software Assurance provides users valuable benefits—please contact Microsoft Corporation for further information. Windows XP, Windows Vista and Windows 7 installed by Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEM) using OEM versions of these products may not be transferred to a virtual hard drive in accordance with Microsoft licensing terms.

Source
http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/sysinternals/ee656415

http://www.experts-exchange.com/OS/Microsoft_Operating_Systems/Windows/XP/A_3721-Can-I-transfer-my-OEM-version-of-Windows-to-another-PC.html

you can use one of the following VMware Products

Type 1 Bare Metal Hypervisors

VMware vSphere Hypervisor (ESXi 4.1) [FREE]
https://www.vmware.com/tryvmware/index.php?p=free-esxi&lp=1

VMware vSphere Hypervisor (ESXi 5.0) [FREE]
https://my.vmware.com/web/vmware/info/slug/datacenter_cloud_infrastructure/vmware_vsphere_hypervisor_esxi/5_0

Type 2 Hypervisor Downloads for Windows OS

VMware Player 5.0 Free Download [FREE]
http://www.vmware.com/go/downloadplayer/

VMware Workstation 9.0 (60 day trial, $199) [EVALUATION]
http://www.vmware.com/go/downloadworkstation
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iscivanomarAuthor Commented:
Thank you  hanccocka. I found all the information and education about my question here.
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