Anthony Martin on 7 Jun 2015 19:07:37 -0700

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Re: [PLUG] Virtualize a bare metal machine

I think there is an option in VMWare for that JP because if I am not mistaken thats what we do with some of the servers at my job. I will try to remember to ask the VMWare guys about it when I go in tomorrow.

Anthony Martin

Jr Linux System Administrator

(M) 609-410-1168

On Sun, Jun 7, 2015 at 9:56 PM, JP Vossen <> wrote:
After all this great info I sort-of hate to even go here, but...  VMware
use to have a separate "VMware Converter" product that did this, live,
over-the-wire, while the Windows machine was running, even to a Linux
host.  They called it P2V for physical-to-virtual.  Then they merged it
into a product, Workstation maybe?  I
m not seeing the option in my Workstation 10 install, but maybe:

I used the current flavor at the time to do a P2V for and XP a few times
and as I recall it was trivial and worked well.  HOWEVER, I've had a lot
less success using VMware P2V for Linux.  That I used to do via LiveCDs
and rsync, but I haven't had to do that since 2013 or so.

So I offer the above with the full understanding that Keith's solution
has far more "geek cred" than mine.  ;-)

As an aside, Windows refugees might like to check out Linux Mint.  I
switched my Mom and Aunt from XP to Mint and they basically can't tell
the difference.

On 06/07/2015 08:42 PM, Roque Lachica Jr wrote:
> Think of it as a " bridge" presentation for Windows refugees like
> myself.  Even an intro. for Linux / Windows augmentation.
> I'll be there.
> On Jun 7, 2015 8:29 PM, "Keith C. Perry" <
> <>> wrote:
>     I never thought to offer it to PLUG since it was more Windows
>     related but I could do in the late summer or early fall if there is
>     interest.
>     ---
>     KP-
>     On Jun 7, 2015 8:09 PM, "Eric H. Johnson" <
>     <>> wrote:
>     >
>     > Keith et al,
>     >
>     >
>     >
>     > Thanks for all the good information. Sounds like a PLUG talk to me. J
>     >
>     >
>     >
>     > Regards,
>     >
>     > Eric
>     >
>     >
>     >
>     >
>     >
>     > My apologizes that email accidentally got sent before I could
>     finish it...  restarting-
>     >
>     >
>     >
>     > ~ ~ ~
>     >
>     > I had offered a talk on this to PACS but the procedure I for
>     Virtualizing windows on Linux also provides clean way of imaging a
>     Windows box which is especially critical to protection from
>     Ransomware.  Since the image is portable it is valid for
>     virtualization use as well as bare metal installations.
>     >
>     > The high level points are that you need two tools:
>     > 1) qemu-img (Linux)
>     > 2) sysprep (Windows)
>     >
>     > You will also need a storage location to store the file the VM
>     file that is produced.
>     >
>     >
>     >
>     > Fortunately for WinXP the procedure might be slightly less
>     complicated.  I'll give you all the steps first and then point out
>     where you might save time.
>     >
>     >
>     >
>     > Boot into Windows and use sysprep to create an
>     out-of-box-experience - open a command prompt and run sysprep from
>     the system32\sysprep folder of your $systemroot (which is normally
>     c:\windows.  When the dialog box comes up choose the one say says
>     "OOBE".  You should also check "Generalize".  For "Shutdown Options"
>     you should choose "Shutdown".  The first time you do this you should
>     not get any errors.  Subsequent runs however will require setting
>     setting two registry keys which reset the OOBE counter.  I don't
>     have that in front of me right now but its out there on the internet
>     but I can email you the .reg file I created to do this if you can't
>     find it.
>     > Boot into a Linux live cd with qemu-img to create the VM disk
>     file - This is a matter of preference but in my case, I have usb
>     disk installs of Lubuntu and Slax that I use.  As long as you have
>     network access you use whatever you want and then get a repository
>     package that has the qemu-img program.  In the Ubuntu world that is
>     "qemu-utils".  You will need to have the storage location for the VM
>     image available.  The most time efficient way to do this is by
>     connecting a USB drive with enough space but you also stream this
>     over the network to a location as well (i.e. via SSH).  Keep in mind
>     that this is the slowest part of the process.  There are ways to
>     accelerate that I will mention later.  This is also space intensive
>     and will consume at least the amount of space you have in use on
>     your file systems.  For USB, mount your storage and do something
>     like "qemu-img convert -O qcow2 /dev/sda /mnt/my_pc.qcow".  In this
>     case, /dev/sda is the windows disk and my USB drive is mounted to /mnt
>     >
>     >
>     >
>     > When this completes you will have a .qcow2 VM image.  To test it,
>     I would create a clone (i.e. a copy of the VM pointing to this file
>     as a backing images, see the qemu-img help) and bring it up.  You'll
>     have to go through the windows set up.  You'll have to create a
>     another user (I just call it sysprep) and when you are done and log
>     off, you will see your others account(s).  You and log into them as
>     they will be intact.  You can delete the sysprep account.  The
>     beauty of this is that when done, you can just delete the clone.
>     Your image remains intact and be used over and over again.
>     >
>     >
>     >
>     > To burn this into bare-metal you would boot from your live cd
>     again, connect your storage and use the qemu-img convert facility to
>     write the image out in the "raw" format to the disk you want.
>     >
>     >
>     >
>     > To accelerate the process you can use dd to capture your boot
>     sectors and then use ntfsprogs to create a clone of your windows
>     drives.  This is much faster but because the rebuild has more steps
>     I don't like to use it here.
>     >
>     >
>     >
>     > I've use this for my Windows 7 Home Premium netbook.  Which also
>     has 2 Linux partitions.  This process protects everything.  So even
>     though its 185Gb, I can sleep well knowing that my netbook can be
>     destroyed and nothing is lost.  In fact, I have it up in
>     virtualization now so I could look at my Windows side instructions
>     again.  For Win XP, I have done this procedure without using sysprep
>     but I don't know if it is always 100% reliable.  We are talking
>     about Windows after all.  With Windows 2000 it was so I suspect it
>     might work in XP but your mileage my vary.

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