Windows Server 2000 P2V with Disk2VHD

Nowadays lot of companies are moving to either private or public cloud to host their IT infrastructure. But at the end of the day sysadmins need to migrate the physical servers to VMs with less effort. In earlier editions of SCVMM this was possible but not with Systems Center 2012 R2.

Sysinternals suite provides a hassle free tiny tool called Disk2VHD to achieve this. This is actually a small exe file which will capture the physical hard disk volumes to VHDs and allows you to save them locally or into a network share.

Disk2vhd_v2.0In December 2013 Disk2VHD v2.0 has been released with support for VHDX format. But you need to keep in mind that in order to convert, the OS must support Windows’ Volume Snapshot. This is a must and it means that you can only convert from Server 2003/Windows XP onwards.

Then we come to the next BIG question. WHAT ABOUT MY WINDOWS SERVER 2000 SERVERS? Personally this was a headache for myself as well as I needed to do a P2V conversion for some Windows Server 2000 machines. After spending few hours in Google (Yes it was somewhere in a TechNet answer. If you couldn’t find it don’t worry) I found a simple trick to make it happen.

  1. Make sure that your grandpa server is running on W2K SP4.
  2. Shutdown the server and take off the hard disk.
  3. Install the hard disk on a computer with Windows XP (anything above that is OK too)
  4. Boot up the second computer and make a note of the new volumes.
  5. Download Disk2VHD exe from here
  6. Create VHDs as you want. You can save them to a local drive or if you have a fast network (from my experience 1 Gbps LAN connection would save a 40 GB hard disk in a matter of 15 minutes via network) you can use an existing shared folder. I still prefer to save to VHD format for Windows 2000.

Et voilà! Your old 2000 server is running on Hyper-V within a matter of minutes.

P.S : Installing guest additions for Windows Server 2000 SP4 is literally a NIGHTMARE unless you know your keyboard shortcuts in VM connection. Take a look at here for list of keyboard shortcuts which may come in handy.