My current PC is a dual boot between Ubuntu 14.04 and Windows 7. I really hardly ever boot to windows. The only thing I really use windows for is gaming, which I have not done much of lately, but now that fallout 4 is out that might change :). I am getting a new Motherboard, processor, etc, and I am thinking of moving my Ubuntu install to a VM running under windows. The main things I do on Ubuntu are Ruby on Rails and Android development, so I think running under a VM should be OK.

So my question is what are some good options for converting a physical Ubuntu 14.04 install to a VM? Here is what I have done so far:

I spent a number of hours (see below) getting to a point where I have a windows machine able to connect to my running Ubuntu install via vmware's standalone converter, but now I realize I need to also have an ESXi server running. So before I go any farther, I would like to ask:

What are my best options for converting a physical 14.04 install to a VM?

FYI: Issues I ran into even getting started with the vmware converter.

  1. Where is the linux version? I did this some number of years ago and it was easy.
  2. VMware converter would not connect to running linux box. I added a root password, but probably needed to add a root userid. Finally got past that by enabling sudo to work with out requiring a password and hacking some vmware converter files by following this

1 Answer 1


While a direct P2V seems like it would be ideal, the issues I was running into made it really not worth the trouble. If you could go directly from a physical machine to a vmplayer file that would have been great (and I think in the past were able to do this). Anyway here is how I managed to do this, and it is pretty painless in the end.

  1. Shrink your existing volume, with gparted, to a size that makes sense, for example if you are only using 100G on a 1T real disk you might want to reduce the volume to something close to the minimum needed.
  2. Image the partition with clonezilla
  3. Install vmplayer or virtual box client on the host
  4. Create your VM, using the option to defer the OS install
  5. Use gparted on the VM to create your partion. Create a partition larger than the partition you imaged (maybe 2X?)
  6. Create a swap partion in the VM as well
  7. use clonzilla to restore the image to the VM partition
  8. Install grub on the VM partition.
  9. Use blkid to find the uuid of your swap partion and update the /ect/fstab file accordingly.

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