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Running a Windows 2000, Windows XP or Windows Server 2003 Virtual Machine from an Existing Multiple-Boot Installation

If you have installed Windows 2000, Windows XP or Windows Server 2003 on a computer, then try to run that same installation of the operating system as a VMware Workstation virtual machine running from a physical disk, the virtual machine may fail with an error message reporting an inaccessible boot device.

The problem occurs because the physical computer and the virtual machine require different IDE drivers. The Windows plug and play feature, which handles drivers for many hardware devices, does not install new IDE drivers.

If you encounter this problem, VMware recommends that you install your Windows 2000, Windows XP or Windows Server 2003 guest operating system in a virtual disk, rather than running it from a physical disk.

If you encounter this problem but it is important for you to run the virtual machine from the existing physical disk configuration, you can set up separate hardware profiles (described in Setting Up Hardware Profiles in Virtual Machines) and manually update the IDE driver in the profile for the virtual machine. For a detailed description of the workaround, see the VMware knowledge base (www.vmware.com/info?id=41).

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