Migrating VMWare Player and VirtualBox VM’s to Hyper-V

Over the summer my boss and I worked on migrating physical machines to virtual machines.  Many of the physical servers were antiquated enough to not bother performing an actual migration.  Instead I created the virtual server from scratch.  To avoid stepping on his toes as he performed migrations of his own, I avoided Hyper-V until the moment we were ready to fire up the new virtual server by creating them on my PC, using Oracle’s VirtualBox and VMWare Player.

I began by using VirtualBox and it works fine, except that it has a known issue with PXE booting which is a feature I require.  After I finally got PXE booting working in VirtualBox, it took over an hour to download my boot image. I eventually got tired of this and moved to VMWare Player.

To move a virtual machine from VirtualBox or VMWare Player, follow these high-level steps.  First uninstall any “features” or “additions” from Oracle or VMWare.  If left installed, this software has the potential to mess up for virtual machine once it’s moved to Hyper-V.

Second, download and run Disk2VHD (a free utility from Microsoft) on your virtual machine. This will convert your virtual machine to a VHD (virtual hard drive) that Hyper-V can understand.  Finally, create a new VM in Hyper-V and select the VHD file you just created as your primary drive.