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Creating VHDs with Sysinternals Disk2vhd

I have used this to turn servers into vhds for Hyper V.   Disk2vhd is a utility that creates VHD  versions of physical disks for use in Microsoft Virtual PC or Microsoft Hyper-V virtual machines. The difference between Disk2vhd and other physical-to-virtual tools is that you can run Disk2vhd on a system that’s online. Disk2vhd uses Windows’ Volume Snapshot capability, introduced in Windows XP, to create consistent point-in-time snapshots of the volumes you want to include in a conversion. You can even have Disk2vhd create the VHDs on local volumes, even ones being converted.  The application is free to download from Windows Sysinternals web site and is really easy to use.  You put it on the machine you want to convert, run it, accept the license, and it brings up the following interface.

Then you select the drive or drives and convert them to vhds. Disk2vhd runs Windows XP SP2, Windows Server 2003 SP1, and higher, including x64 systems.  Disk2vhd also includes command-line options that enable you to script the creation of VHDs.  Specify the volumes you want included in a snapshot by drive letter or use “*” to include all volumes.

Syntax:    disk2vhd <[drive: [drive:]…]|[*]> <vhdfile>
Example: disk2vhd * c:\vhd\test.vhd

To use VHDs produced by Disk2vhd, create a VM with the desired characteristics and add the VHDs to the VM’s configuration as IDE disks that can be used via the Virtual PC, Virtual Server 2005, or Hyper-V.  This utility is a very easy way to create vhds that can be used to dual boot machines like I described in the Windows 7 article I wrote earlier this month.  You can download Disk2vhd at: http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/sysinternals/ee656415.aspx

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