Monday, April 4, 2016

P2V Windows 7: BSOD Solution

For whatever reason, when performing a P2V on a Windows 7 machine, you are very likely to experience a BSOD, even if you use VMware Converter. There is a painless workaround, however, using a combination of Sysinternals Disk2vhd and Starwind V2V Converter. In my case, after using these tools, I also had to make some registry edits with an offline registry editor in order to resolve the BSOD. The steps are actually quite easy, though it took me a while to figure them out.

Before I give you the how-to, I want to say I'm very thankful to these two bloggers for the information on the aforementioned tools, and also thankful to various forum posters from whom I got the needed registry settings. Today's post is meant to gather the various information I used into one resource and relate my experience. Also, the offline registry edit I did from a live (virtual) CD may be useful information to some. Here are the steps I used to P2V my Windows 7 Pro 64-bit machine so that it could be used in VMware Workstation Player:

1. Download and run Disk2vhd on the Windows 7 physical machine you want to convert.

2. The Disk2vhd interface is very simple. Just be sure to set it to be vhd (not vhdx which would be for Windows 8) and let it do it's thang.

3. Download, install and run StarWind V2V Converter. (They make you fill out a contact form and then they send you a download link. Or, you may be able to get this link to work, so you don't have to. :) )
4. Use StarWind V2V Converter to convert your vhd to a vmdk and copy the resulting vmdk to your host machine. It has very simple interface.

5. Open VMware Workstation Player and create a new Windows 7 virtual machine. Before powering it on, however, remove the hard drive and replace it with the vmdk created above.

6. Power on the VM. In my case, at this point I still got a BSOD and was considering giving up. If this is you, read on...

7. You're going to have to make some offline registry edits on your unbootable system. You could do this by connecting your virtual hard drive of your VM to another Windows VM (google it), but my preference was to boot the VM to AVG Rescue CD. Just download AVG Rescue CD and boot your VM to the ISO.

8. Choose the registry editor in the AVG Rescue CD menu under Utilities.

9. Navigate to HKLM\SYSTEM\ControlSet[001]\services\

10. For me, I was able to fix the problem by editing each of the following to be a value of 0:


However, reading online, it appears that some users with different drivers had to make other registry changes under HKLM\SYSTEM\ControlSet[001]\services\. Here are some of the other edits I saw on various forums:

Aliide\Start = 3
Amdide\Start =3
Atapi\Start = 0
Cmdide\Start = 3
iaStorV\Start = 3
intelide\Start = 0
msahci\Start = 3
pciide\Start = 3
viaide\Start = 3

Do not make these updates unless you know what you are doing. Consider writing down the current settings before making any changes so you can revert if needed.

11. As soon as I made the LSI_SAS\Start and LSI_SAS2\Start registry edits and booted back into the native/guest OS, it started working!

Host OS = lubuntu 14.04.4 64-bit
Guest OS: Windows 7 Pro 64-bit
Live CD: AVG Rescue CD ( avg_arl_cdi_all_120_150814a10442.iso )
vmware Workstation 12 Player