VMware Converter 5.0.1 can be installed on Windows 8, makes resizing a VM's C: drive straight-forward

Posted by Paul Braren on Jan 6 2013 in
  • ESXi
  • about-converter

    VMware Converter 5.0.1 was released on October 25, 2012:

    VMware vCenter Converter Standalone 5.0.1, 2012-10-25 | 5.0.1 | 127 MB | Binary (.exe) VMware-converter-all-5.0.1-875114.exe
    An executable that includes all VMware vCenter Converter Standalone 5.0.1 software components.

    It appears to be a minor patch for a particular crash that I experienced myself recently, and nothing more. Downloaded from here:

    Seems to work on my Windows 8 64 bit system just fine, orchestrating the conversion of a Windows 7 system hosted on ESXi 5.1. Even though Windows 8 is not on the list of supported platforms in the release notes. It's clear that even VMware ESXi 5.1 isn't officially supported by this release. So its development cycle continues to lag behind, much as I found to be the case way back in 2005 when I first began to regularly use this free tool for my customers. But it still generally works, suited only for lab use though, given it's entirely unsupported for ESXi 5.1.

    This version even seems to work with converting VMs that have had their virtual hardware upgraded to vmx-09, as long as you remember to "Upgrade Virtual Hardware" before booting the copied VM, and tweak the Network Adapter type if needed (re-adding VMXNET 3 if desired). You will also have to re-activate Windows, since the virtual hardware has changed. Takes just an extra 3 seconds, no biggie.

    Alternatively, I could have run converter from withing the VM being converted, which may have been faster. But for me, since this was a one-off, the speed of kicking this off and walking away was more import, coming back about 3 hours later to a completed system. And I can use converter again down the road, without having to re-install.

    This first video below, by VMwareKB, is about best practices with using VMware Converter, from back on January 22 2012. Frankly, not much has changed since then. It includes mention that you should use IP addresses instead of host names, to maximize your chances of a successful conversion, this video link jumps right to that part (2 minutes, 10 seconds):

    So, what if you're using ESXi 5.1, and all you really want to do is resize a Windows based VM's C: drive? In other words, can the Converter GUI be used, instead of command line resizing tools or 3rd party apps like Partion Magic? The answer is clearly yes, as you'll see in this video I've just produced, using the VMware Converter 5.0.1, step-by-step detailed walk-through: