Converting physical machine to Hyper V

ronnie13
ronnie13 used Ask the Experts™
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Hi,

I have to convert several physical machines to virtual machines in a Hyper V environment. I have two host servers with Windows Server 2012 R2 and Hyper V installed, which have been installed by a consultant. As far as I know I need the Virtual Machine Manager Administrator Console tool to perform the conversion. However I can't find where to download this tool. Is this a licensed tool or can I download it for free? I've been looking at several Technet articles to find a solution, http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/cc917882.aspx and http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/bb740758.aspx among others, but I can't seem to find the solution. The existing servers must be converted with their current OS, applications etc. So basically I want to create a VHD of the existing physical servers and move them into the Hyper V environment. Can any of you please help me on how to do this?

Thanks in advance,
Ronnie
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Distinguished Expert 2018
Commented:
The tool you mention is a part of  System Center, which is not even close to free. You will not find a free download for it.

I would personally recommend installing new servers in Hyper-V and then migrating roles, applications, and data. If, for some reason, that is not possible, people have used backup programs that can do hardware independent restores to backup the physical machine and restore into a VM. The product I've seen with the highest success rate here is ShadowProtect and they have an IT edition that is licensed for an amount of time instead of per machine, which is ideal for these scenarios. Finally, as a last ditch effort, some have used the free sysinternals tool "disk2vhd" to convert physical disks into....VHD files. The downside here is that the original drivers will all be there and that has a significant risk of unstable VMs.
Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE Fellow)VMware and Virtualization Consultant
Fellow 2018
Expert of the Year 2017
Commented:
If you do not have access to, or purchased SCVMM 2012 R2, I would use Disk2VHD

Download is here
http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/sysinternals/ee656415

and you can follow an article here how to use it

http://www.altaro.com/hyper-v/using-disk2vhd-for-physical-to-virtual-conversions-p2v/

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Commented:
Thanks a lot for the replies so far. I have a question regarding Disk2VHD which I had already been looking at. Will this preserve the OS version and all the 3rd party software installed? The software looks as if it could perform the P2V conversion that I'm looking for. I'll have to clean up drivers and stuff after the conversion, and I assume that I'll also have to install the NIC and configure it with the proper IP address etc. on the virtual machine after making sure, the physical server is not connected to the network with the same name and/or IP address anymore, right?
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Distinguished Expert 2018

Commented:
Disk2VHD does a block-level conversion. So everything (for better or worse) is preserved. Since a VM has a different NIC, the virtualized OS will see it as different hardware (much like plugging in  a USB adapter into a machine) so it will not have any of the old NIC settings.
Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE Fellow)VMware and Virtualization Consultant
Fellow 2018
Expert of the Year 2017
Commented:
Yes, it will do what you want, we use a hundred times a week.

It just performs a CLONE....

You will have to perform post conversion items after conversion, adding IP information back, and removing ALL the hidden drivers...and Machine specific vendor software.
Mike TLeading Engineer
Commented:
Hi,

+1 for Andrew's suggestion and link.

Q: Will this preserve the OS version and all the 3rd party software installed?
A: Yes

Q: I'll have to clean up drivers and stuff after the conversion?
A: Yes - show hidden etc as per the link

Q: I'll also have to install the NIC and configure it with the proper IP address
A: Not quite - and Yes. Not quite - you add the NIC in the VM settings, so no need to "Add hardware" within the OS. When you bring the VHD up as a VM it will now have a virtual network card with no IP.

Q: after making sure, the physical server is not connected to the network with the same name and/or IP address anymore, right?
A: No. The VM will only have shadows of the real hardware - i.e. no NIC, no Dell PERC controller, no Intel video card. It will only have emulated hardware and only the ones you add via the VM settings.

I've used disk2vhd about a dozens times so far. It works but it does rely on the OS and having shadow copy (VSS) working. It will moan at the start if it is disabled or broken.

Mike

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