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Moving virtual server to new host

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  • Moving virtual server to new host

    Hi, I am new to the world of virtual server, but have been using virtual server 2005 for a while. I have a windows 2003 enterprise server (host) running a vm which is running windows server 2003 standard (guest). I need to wipe the enterprise edition install and redo it and was wondering how I would migrate the vm? It may be important to note that the vm is a dc. My plan after the reinstall is to transfer the role of dc from guest to the host, but that is a topic for another day. Bear in mind this is a test network at home, so no worries about downtime.

    My idea is to shutdown the guest os and clear any undo file. Then move the vhd and vhc files to offline storage. Reinstall OS and reinstall virtual server. Move the backed up files from offline storage back to the server. Then create a new virtual machine and import the file.

    I think I have the theory correct in my head, but I am worried about the process failing somehow. Is there a detailed document that will show me how to do this?

    Thank you.

    Tim Stark

  • #2
    Re: Moving virtual server to new host

    Hi, Tim.
    Although I played with virtual machines a lot, I never dealt with one that is a DC. I hope there's no big difference, because two reasons:
    - we're talking about a test environment (not that I discount it, but it's not the same );
    - you're talking about "putting the machine aside for a moment", and there's no danger of being two identical DCs in the same network.
    Few things I would pay attention to, in addition to what you said:
    - write down the DCs MAC address, especially if it is dynamic. You will need it later, when you will move the machine back to the new installed server. It should be in the configuration file, but to be sure;
    - do you have undo disks enabled? If you do, decide if you want to merge the changes or otherwise be sure you copy the undo disk (.vud) too;
    - by default, if you create virtual machines for all users on your machine (and not private), the Virtual Server creates two folders under C:\Documents and Settings\All Users\Documents, called Shared Virtual Networks (containing .vnc files) and Shared Virtual Machines (containing the .vmc files). Check what you have under those;
    - generally speaking, check the virtual machine configuration for the different components and see what do you hold where. Besides the files already mentioned, you may have CD images (ISO files and such) and/or FD images (God forgive us! ).

    Take a look at this article from Microsoft: Copying, managing, and renaming virtual machines.

    Good luck.
    Last edited by sorinso; 30th January 2008, 06:16. Reason: typos :(

    Sorin Solomon

    In order to succeed, your desire for success should be greater than your fear of failure.