The Blog

Mar 25, 2009

Converting Virtual PC .vhd Images To VMWare .vmdk Images 

by Maxim Porges @ 10:17 PM | Link | Feedback (2)

We use Microsoft Dynamics CRM to track our customers and related software feature requests and opportunities. Chris (our Sales Engineering manager) has been customizing the system for our needs, and we've been looking in to integrating with it further through the web service API.

Since we don't want to develop web services against the production instance, Chris suggested I download the demo version which is available as VirtualPC image. Of course, being on a Mac, I can't run VirtualPC, but I do run VMWare Fusion.

After I downloaded the VirtualPC image, I downloaded a free tool from VMWare that you can use to convert multiple types of images to VMWare disk images. The file I got from Microsoft was a .vhd file, but when I tried to convert it the VMWare converter told me that it couldn't deal with .vhd files.

However, it was able to convert .vmc files, which are the virtual machine files that go with the .vhd (which is essentially a virtual hard disk). So, I downloaded VirtualPC and installed it in to VMWare, and used it to create a VirtualPC virtual machine .vmc file using the .vhd file as the hard drive. After I created this, I shut down VirtualPC, fired up the VMWare converter in Fusion, and converted the 11 GB image by pointing it to the .vmc file. Problem solved.

I was quite surprised at how fast the conversion was: it converted the 11 GB file in about 45 minutes, with VMWare Fusion both reading and writing over the local network connection to the host Mac OS. After the conversion, I was able to open the VMWare image files produced by the converter and install VMWare tools as usual within the virtual machine.