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I provide much details below to hopefully make my issue as clear as possible.

Using dd if=/dev/ps3da2 of=/mnt/edexhdd/EDPS3LINUX.iso bs=16384 I copied a fairly huge partition from a physical Linux non-Xwindow installation on a PPC64 architecture (actually the PS3) to an external HDD. The partition which on Linux was one of the two present (i.e. /boot and /) is more than 66 GB. This partition was the second and not bootable. Actually fdisk -lu /mnt/edexhdd/EDPS3LINUX.iso says something like this partition 'has no valid partition table'.

Meanwhile I can mount it on Linux via mount -o loop /mnt/edexhdd/EDPS3LINUX.iso /mnt/testmnt and walk through it all.

My intention is to work from a VMWare Workstation on my Windows 7 laptop (64 bit and VT capable). Everything is duly installed and other VMWare images work well. So I moved the image to Windows and created the necessary vmdk file...

D:\raw2vmdk>java -jar raw2vmdk.jar EDPS3LINUX.iso EDPS3LINUX.vmdk

Analysing image: D:\EDPS3LINUX.iso [66229960704 bytes]

Number of sectors:      129355392
Number of cylinders:    0
Heads per track:        0
Sectors per track:      0

Loading VMDK template...
Writing VMDK file to: D:\EDPS3LINUX.vmdk
All done.

Finally I walk through the usual steps in VMWare Workstation (8) to load my image (pointing to C:\Program Files\VMware\VMware Workstation\linux.iso for the CD/DVD ISO and D:\EDPS3LINUX.vmdk for the HDD image). After which all I see is the network boot PXE stuff and then everything halts with 'operating system not found'.

Under my circumstances what can I do to boot my PS3 image in VMWare as intended? I don't imagine reinstalling all the Linux stuff into the VMWare environment - way too much stuff and configs done. Pls help.

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What you are trying to do is not possible. You cannot emulate a Linux PPC64 architecture in VMware Workstation. – fpmurphy1 Feb 28 '13 at 15:04

I think you have multiple things going on here.

You'll never be able to boot a non-x86/x64 operating system in VMware Workstation. It isn't a CPU emulation environment, but rather a virtualization environment for the host CPU.

That having been said, it sounds like you've taken an image of a partition and turned that into a disk image. The VMWare Workstation BIOS is looking for a partition table on this disk and isn't finding it, so it's not even going to attempt to boot it.

You're able to mount the file loopback in a Linux installation because it does contain a valid filesystem image, but it lacks the necessary partition table to make it bootable to an x86 BIOS.

You could put together the necessary partition table to make the VMware Workstation BIOS attempt to boot the disk, but even if you do it's still not going to be bootable on an x86 machine.

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