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Moving virtual disks between VMs

Posted on 2014-02-06
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Last Modified: 2014-02-06
Probably a dumb questions but here goes. I want to repurpose a W2K8R2 server that is currently providing a home for some shared folders. Is it possible to move a virtual disk file in a SAN from a W2K8R2  server (running in a VM) to a W2K3R2 server (also running in a VM) and retain the same security and sharing permissions? I know that I can use the File Migration tool to move the folders from one server to another but I was thinking that a faster way and one that wouldn't stream larges amount of data across the vswitch would be to reassign the VMDK file. I understand that the mount points on the desktop clients would need remapping after the move but this bit I could handle by changing the login scripts.
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Question by:steve352
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Expert Comment

by:Alex Green
ID: 39839209
In theory yes you can,

You'd have to add a new disk on the new server and then point it to your existing disk. Whilst the security would be in place you wouldn't have the added benefit of the disk being in the same LUN or folder as the new server. You'd have to move that yourself if you wanted them to be together.

http://kb.vmware.com/selfservice/microsites/search.do?language=en_US&cmd=displayKC&externalId=900

That one should help you out.
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Mahesh earned 500 total points
ID: 39839722
1st You require to export shares registry on 2k8R2 server
[HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Services\LanmanServer\Shares]
Note down the drive letter assigned to VMDK drive \ file on 2k8R2 server.
Then you can shutdown 2k8R2 server and detach VMDK

Then reset 2k8R2 computer account in AD. Then rename 2003 server same as 2k8R2 (hostname and IP address must match to 2k8R2 server) as a member server.
Shutdown 2K3 server and attach VMDK file with same drive letter as 2k8R2 to it.Then restore \ merge shares registry exported earlier on 2k3 server

Now you should have full functional w2k3 server with accurate Share and NTFS permissions and it should work as it is on client computers seamlessly.
Because NTFS permissions will not change even if you move VMDK between servers

Do not forget to backup VMDK data before proceeding with activity
Once activity completed successfully and you verified that with client access you can use 2k8R2 server for else purpose.

Mahesh
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Author Comment

by:steve352
ID: 39839883
Mahesh,

  Thanks for that. Your solution is exactly what I was looking for!

Steve
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