Copying a Virtual Machine to a New Server

To copy a VMware virtual machine to a new server you need to follow these steps:

  • Install VMware on the new server
  • Create a virtual machine on the new server of the proper type (Windows, Linux, etc)
  • Copy all files from the virtual machine’s directory on the old server to the corresponding directory on the new machine.
  • At this point it is possible that will need to use the VMware console to modify the properties of the virtual machine to match the configuration of the new server.  For example, the CD-ROM device name might be different, the virtual networking parameters might be different, etc.
  • Once the virtual machines properties have been set to match the new server all you should need to do is  start the virtual machine.  At this point you will be told that the virtual machine has been moved to a new location.  You will need to pick the appropriate option here if you want you virtual machine to work properly.  If you have shutdown the virtual machine on the old server and want to move it to the new server, choose to KEEP the old settings.  This causes things like the MAC address and IP address to be preserved.  If you choose to use new values so that you can run two copies (in different servers) at the same time the virtual machine will be assigned a new MAC address.  In some versions of Windows that could force you to re-register the software.

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