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Questions about VM stored on an External USB HD

J
#1
Please forgive the very basic questions but I'm new to the Virtualization
world.

I would like to create a virtual machine and be able to take it with me. My
goal is to install a virtual machine on a Seagate FreeAgent GO and take it
between work and home.

Is this possible with Virtual PC 2007? Can I move a VM stored on a USB
drive between two or more host PCs that are not identical?

To be clear, I would like the VM to always reside on the external USB drive,
not on the host PC.

Thanks in advance for your advice.
 

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Bo Berglund

#2
On Sat, 7 Feb 2009 08:57:00 -0800, Jeff
<Jeff@xxxxxx> wrote:

>Please forgive the very basic questions but I'm new to the Virtualization
>world.
>
>I would like to create a virtual machine and be able to take it with me. My
>goal is to install a virtual machine on a Seagate FreeAgent GO and take it
>between work and home.
>
>Is this possible with Virtual PC 2007? Can I move a VM stored on a USB
>drive between two or more host PCs that are not identical?
>
>To be clear, I would like the VM to always reside on the external USB drive,
>not on the host PC.
>
>Thanks in advance for your advice.
Yes, you can do this. The only real requirement is that you install
the same version of VirtualPC (VPC2007SP1 for example) on both host
PC:s.

When you create the virtual machine make sure to browse to the
location (folder) on your USB drive for both the VMC and VHD files so
they are stored together.

You can now start the virtual machine in either host by doubleclicking
the VMC file.

Caveat:
If you have widely differing CPU:s in the two hosts then you might get
into trouble depending on which operating system you install in the
guest. AMD on one and Intel on the other may cause some headaches, I
believe....
--

Bo Berglund (Sweden)
 

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C.Joseph Drayton

#3
On 2/7/2009 09:57, Jeff wrote:

> Please forgive the very basic questions but I'm new to the Virtualization
> world.
>
> I would like to create a virtual machine and be able to take it with me. My
> goal is to install a virtual machine on a Seagate FreeAgent GO and take it
> between work and home.
>
> Is this possible with Virtual PC 2007? Can I move a VM stored on a USB
> drive between two or more host PCs that are not identical?
>
> To be clear, I would like the VM to always reside on the external USB drive,
> not on the host PC.
>
> Thanks in advance for your advice.
>
Hi Jeff,

Yes you can do that. The only thing that you will notice is
that it is extremely slow since it is running over USB.
There are three things that I do that help it run slightly
faster;

1) Allocate 512MB or more (preferably 1GB) to the VM if the
host machine has that much RAM available.
2) Turn off the paging file since swapping to disk when your
running from USB is so slow.
3) Set the size of the VHD to fixed. I do this because my
portable drives get used heavily and are pretty fragmented
after about 3 - 4 days. By allocating the full size of the
VHD, when you do your defrag of the USB drive, the VHD is
all put in one place.

Sincerely,
C.Joseph Drayton, Ph.D. AS&T

CSD Computer Services

Web site: http://csdcs.site90.net/
E-mail: cjoseph@xxxxxx
 

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J
#4
I thought USB was not supported in VPC. But it seems a USB drive is
supported. What am I missing? Thanks.

"Jeff" <Jeff@xxxxxx> wrote in message
news:CEC78EED-FCC0-4496-9B41-63AC228DF394@xxxxxx

> Please forgive the very basic questions but I'm new to the Virtualization
> world.
>
> I would like to create a virtual machine and be able to take it with me.
> My
> goal is to install a virtual machine on a Seagate FreeAgent GO and take it
> between work and home.
>
> Is this possible with Virtual PC 2007? Can I move a VM stored on a USB
> drive between two or more host PCs that are not identical?
>
> To be clear, I would like the VM to always reside on the external USB
> drive,
> not on the host PC.
>
> Thanks in advance for your advice.
>
 

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M

Mark Rae [MVP]

#5
"John" <me@xxxxxx> wrote in message
news:eq2lR6WiJHA.1248@xxxxxx

>> Is this possible with Virtual PC 2007? Can I move a VM stored on a USB
>> drive between two or more host PCs that are not identical?
>>
>> To be clear, I would like the VM to always reside on the external USB
>> drive, not on the host PC.
>
>I thought USB was not supported in VPC. But it seems a USB drive is
>supported. What am I missing?
Apart from one exception, USB devices are not visible to guest operating
systems in VPC. The exception is when USB devices are available through
networking or emulation. E.g. USB keyboards and mice are supported because
VPC emulates them as PS/2 devices. USB drives, memory sticks, Zip drives etc
are supported so long as the host can share them as network drives.

But that's not what the OP is asking. The OP is asking if it's possible for
VPC to store virtual machines on USB devices which, of course, is perfectly
possible.


--
Mark Rae
ASP.NET MVP
http://www.markrae.net
 

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David Wilkinson

#6
Bo Berglund wrote:

> Caveat:
> If you have widely differing CPU:s in the two hosts then you might get
> into trouble depending on which operating system you install in the
> guest. AMD on one and Intel on the other may cause some headaches, I
> believe....
Can someone comment about this? I have a mixture of AMD and Intel machines in my
home office.

What does one have to do to move a virtual machine between these two architectures?

Is the CPU the only thing one needs to worry about here?

--
David Wilkinson
Visual C++ MVP
 

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Robert Comer

#7
>What does one have to do to move a virtual machine between these two architectures?

If you want to make absolutely sure after moving a VM between
architectures (assuming a Windows OS XP or after), boot into safe mode
the first time after the move then reboot normally. There's only one
thing I've heard of happening between CPU type and this is the "fix".

>Is the CPU the only thing one needs to worry about here?
If you move both the VHD and the .VMC file, yep, CPU is the only
difference, but if instead you don't copy the VMC file, but create a
new one, you might have to deal with activation again because of the
emulated hardware changing.

--
Bob Comer



On Sun, 08 Feb 2009 07:00:48 -0500, David Wilkinson
<no-reply@xxxxxx> wrote:

>Bo Berglund wrote:

>> Caveat:
>> If you have widely differing CPU:s in the two hosts then you might get
>> into trouble depending on which operating system you install in the
>> guest. AMD on one and Intel on the other may cause some headaches, I
>> believe....
>
>Can someone comment about this? I have a mixture of AMD and Intel machines in my
>home office.
>
>What does one have to do to move a virtual machine between these two architectures?
>
>Is the CPU the only thing one needs to worry about here?
 

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David Wilkinson

#8
Robert Comer wrote:

>> What does one have to do to move a virtual machine between these two architectures?
>
> If you want to make absolutely sure after moving a VM between
> architectures (assuming a Windows OS XP or after), boot into safe mode
> the first time after the move then reboot normally. There's only one
> thing I've heard of happening between CPU type and this is the "fix".
>

>> Is the CPU the only thing one needs to worry about here?
>
> If you move both the VHD and the .VMC file, yep, CPU is the only
> difference, but if instead you don't copy the VMC file, but create a
> new one, you might have to deal with activation again because of the
> emulated hardware changing.
>
Thanks, Robert.

--
David Wilkinson
Visual C++ MVP
 

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R

Robert Comer

#9
You're welcome, glad to help.

--
Bob Comer


On Mon, 09 Feb 2009 09:17:57 -0500, David Wilkinson
<no-reply@xxxxxx> wrote:

>Robert Comer wrote:

>>> What does one have to do to move a virtual machine between these two architectures?
>>
>> If you want to make absolutely sure after moving a VM between
>> architectures (assuming a Windows OS XP or after), boot into safe mode
>> the first time after the move then reboot normally. There's only one
>> thing I've heard of happening between CPU type and this is the "fix".
>>

>>> Is the CPU the only thing one needs to worry about here?
>>
>> If you move both the VHD and the .VMC file, yep, CPU is the only
>> difference, but if instead you don't copy the VMC file, but create a
>> new one, you might have to deal with activation again because of the
>> emulated hardware changing.
>>
>
>Thanks, Robert.
 

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