Migrating from BootCamp to Parallels

Discussion in 'Parallels Desktop for Mac' started by michaelb, Jun 10, 2006.

  1. michaelb

    michaelb Bit poster

    I'd like to know how I can best migrate my existing Windows XP install under BootCamp to a Windows XP install under Parallels. I have the original Windows XP SP2 install disk, and can chase down the dozens of other individual application disks (some of which take hours to install), but I'd really rather find a simpler, less time-consuming approach to migrate.

    I've read the FAQ, and am aware that Windows XP installed using BootCamp contains drivers not suitable for Parallels. However, perhaps there is some other way to transfer my applications? (Files and settings I can do by booting into Windows, running the transfer wizard, booting back into the MacOS, creating the Parallels VM, installing Windows there, and then running the wizard again.)
    Last edited: Jun 10, 2006
  2. sas

    sas Junior Member

    I have no idea if this would work but I'd try the following:

    If your bootcamp partition is, say, /dev/disk0s3, I'd use dd to copy it to a file:

    dd if=/dev/disk0s3 of=/Users/sas/Temp/win.hdd

    and replace the drive in an existing Windows virtual machine with it. *If* hdd files are plain 1-1 copies of a partition without any header or file format information in it that could possibly make it loadable in Parallels. Next, however, you'd face the problem of booting a Windows that was installed on completely different hardware and as far as I know that usually isn't pretty.

    Hoping for a compatible dd copy is a bit of a longshot but it should be easy enough to at least try (if you have enough disk space).

  3. michaelb

    michaelb Bit poster


    I can't imagine that would work. I've already copied the entire Windows partition to an external drive (but less opaquely, so I can surgically copy bits and pieces I may need later).

    It's pretty clear no one has successfully done this migration. I'll just bite the bullet and reinstall everything from scratch.
  4. drtimhill

    drtimhill Member

    Frankly, migration of Windows settings doesn't even work properly when moving from one PC to another, so its unlikely to work here. I would just do a clean install; takes a little more time but you know it will work.

  5. ivel

    ivel Member

    if you use something like Acronis True image you can then select restore to different hardware in the wizard. You would install the software in bootcamp and then build an image there, and then restore it into a hard drive image in Parallels. It is a bare metal restore making it nice to move between different machines/hardware.

    Hope this helps,
  6. veggiedude

    veggiedude Hunter

    Would the Apple bootcamp software for XP bluetooth support... etc. etc, have any advantages if installed into PW? Has anyone tried??
  7. DarylF2

    DarylF2 Member

    I just went through a few weeks of trying to get Acronis True Image 9.1 Workstation working under Boot Camp on my 20" iMac Core Duo 2.0 GHz (running Windows XP SP2), and Acronis finally gave up and refunded my money. The problem, apparently, was the disk/partition format. I had also purchased their Universal Restore package and it wouldn't install at all, presumably due to the True Image issues.

    I was really hoping this would work as it might offer a truly effective way to migrate my Boot Camp installation to Parallels, but True Image 9.1 just doesn't like Boot Camp. A future version may fare better, but they didn't seem overly confident that they'd make a Mac/Boot Camp compatible version... At least their technical support was really good and they refunded my money without any trouble at all.

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