Jun 112010

Options for running 64-bit VPC (.vhd) from Windows 7 (non server OS).


If you’re working with SharePoint 2010 images you are aware that these need to run on a 64bit  system. Now the problem is that Microsoft’s own Virtual PC software does not support 64bit images, so Microsoft has Hyper-V for this (only available in Windows Server).


Now if you want to download and run SharePoint images provided by Microsoft they will have .vhd hard disks which run a 64bit OS and as not everyone is running a Windows Server instance on their machine you won’t have Hyper-V to run these.


Here are at least some of your options to get past this problem without installing Windows Server on your machine.


1. Converting your virtual hard disk


Now there are tools to convert .vhd disks to .vmdk and the other way around such as “StarWind V2V Image Converter”. So in our case you convert you’re .vhd file to a .vmdk file which you can then run with VMware player which does support 64-bit OS. I’ve tried this and it does work but it sure takes a long time, time you possibly don’t have…


2. Free 3rd party software that runs both .vhd and .vmdk and supports 64-bit OS.


I’ve now found a great piece of software called “VMLite Workstation” which is completely free and available for download after registration. This tool allows you to create virtual machines from almost any type of hard disk (.vhd - .vmdk - .vdi - .hdd) and multiple OS’s including 64-bit.


This way you just download the hard disks in .vhd format from Microsoft and create a new Virtual machine with VMLite and you’re working in 5 min’s!




Hope this saves you some time!




Published: 6/11/2010  2:44 PM | 0  Comments | 0  Links to this post