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Upgrading a PC using VM to Hardware Migration

Posted on 2014-02-12
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Last Modified: 2016-10-27
Trying to upgrade a PC from Windows 7 x64 to Windows 8.1 x64.  I typically like fresh install OS, no matter what. Given that in the process of a fresh install many personalized settings and files may be lost, I was wondering if there is a way to utilize VM to install the new OS without any impact to the physical hardware or current OS, setup the VM with the various personal APPS / software that we need, and with the ability to switch back and forth between the physical OS and the VM OS to carbon copy personal files, settings and etc..

Once we have a fully functional VM that is satisfactory, then migrate it to the physical hardware of the PC.  

Is this possible?

Any problems, issues or precautions?

How would I go about doing it?
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Question by:esabet
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Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE) earned 500 total points
ID: 39854575
It is possible, you can use a VMware Hypervisor

VMware Player 6.0 Free Download [FREE]
http://www.vmware.com/go/downloadplayer/

VMware Workstation 10.0 (60 day trial, $199) [EVALUATION]
www.vmware.com/go/downloadworkstation

tor create your virtual machine, and tweak all your settings, and then you can transfer this to physical hardware which we call a V2P, this can be achieved, with Acronis Software, and Universal Restore (to bare metaL) e.g. new PC.
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by:esabet
ID: 39854701
Thank you.  Is VMware Workstation preferred over VMware Player?

Can you also give a brief overview of the process (i.e. How Acronis comes into the picture?).

Lastly, would I be able to run the VM and the current OS simultaneously so that I can transfer files between the two "machines"?
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LVL 117
ID: 39854711
Thank you.  Is VMware Workstation preferred over VMware Player?

VMware Player is a cut down free version of VMware Workstation, which is available as a trial but not free.

Can you also give a brief overview of the process (i.e. How Acronis comes into the picture?).

It's a backup product, so you would install in the Virtual Machine, Backup to a Remote Location. e.g. USB external hard disk.

Boot your physical computer with the Acronis CDROM Media, locate the Backup, select universal restore, and Restore the Backup.

Lastly, would I be able to run the VM and the current OS simultaneously so that I can transfer files between the two "machines"?

Yes, either through normal networking, or a function called Shared Folders
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by:esabet
ID: 39854768
Thank you again. I think now I understand the process.

Is Acronis your preferred backup/restore app?
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LVL 117
ID: 39854773
For Universal Restore to Bare Metal - yes.
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