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Moving VMware Workstation 3.0 Virtual Machines

If you have created a virtual machine using VMware Workstation 3.0, or another VMware product, and you want to move it to a different computer or to another directory on your host, you need to perform the tasks outlined in this section.

These instructions assume that you are using a virtual disk — stored in a set of .vmdk files on your host computer.

Caution: It's always safest to make backup copies of all the files in your virtual machine's directory before you start a process like this.

This section discusses the following topics regarding moving a Workstation 3 virtual machine:

Preparing Your Workstation 3 Virtual Machine for the Move

1. Use VMware Workstation 3 to open the virtual machine. If the virtual machine has more than one virtual disk and if the virtual disks use different disk modes, you must use the Virtual Machine Control Panel to change one or more of the virtual disks so they all use the same mode.

2. Be sure you know whether the virtual disk is set up as an IDE disk or a SCSI disk. You can check this in the Virtual Machine Control Panel.

Also, note the size of the virtual disk you are moving. You need this information when you prepare the new host machine, as described in the next section.

3. Be sure the guest operating system is completely shut down. If the virtual machine is suspended, resume it using the VMware product with which you created the virtual machine, then shut down the guest operating system.

Note: Do not move a suspended virtual machine from one host to another.

4. If your virtual machine is using disks in undoable mode, it is best to commit or discard the changes when the guest operating system shuts down. If you cannot commit or discard the changes to your disk, read Considerations for Moving Workstation Disks in Undoable Mode.

5. If you have a network connection between the original host machine and the new host, you are finished with the preparations on the original host. Otherwise, you need to have a way of moving the virtual disk (.vmdk) files from the virtual machine's directory to the new host. You could move them to a shared network directory, for example, or burn them to CD-ROMs if they are not too large.

Note: If your disks are using undoable mode and you have not committed or discarded your changes, you must also move the redo-log (.REDO) files to the new host computer.

Preparing the Workstation 5 Host Machine for a Workstation 3 Virtual Machine

1. Make sure VMware Workstation 5 is installed and working correctly on the new host computer.

2. Run the New Virtual Machine Wizard and select the appropriate guest operating system for the virtual machine you are moving.

  • Choose a virtual disk for your hard drive and use a drive size and type (IDE or SCSI) that matches the size and type of the virtual disk you plan to move.
  • Select all appropriate network, floppy and CD-ROM settings. Do not make any changes in the virtual machine settings editor at this point.
  • Save your settings and close VMware Workstation.
  • 3. In the directory just created for the new virtual machine, delete the brand new .vmdk files that were just created.

    4. Locate the virtual disk files you are moving and copy them into the new virtual machine directory.

    Note: If your virtual machine is using disks in undoable mode and you did not commit or discard your changes before the move, you must also move the redo-log (.REDO) files to the new host computer.

    5. Start VMware Workstation 5 again and open the new virtual machine you just created. Choose VM > Settings.

    6. Be sure the virtual machine is configured to use the virtual disk files you moved from the original host. You need to confirm that the new disk's settings — IDE or SCSI and the file name for the first .vmdk file — match those that were used on the original host machine.

    The device listing for the hard drive shows whether it is SCSI or IDE. If that setting does not match the virtual disk you are moving, select the hard disk and click Remove. Then click Add and use the Add Hardware Wizard to add an IDE or SCSI disk as appropriate. To specify IDE or SCSI, when you reach the Disk File screen in the wizard, click the Advanced button.

    Be sure the filename and path for the virtual disk match the actual filename and location for the first .vmdk file used by the virtual machine you are moving.

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