I need to find a solution for developers using virtual environments with VMWare Workstation 7.
We develop in different and incompatible environments. Presently almost a week is lost when modifying a developers PC for a particular environment. We need a method for creating a virtual machine then leaving it on a server. When a developer needs a particular environment they can just grab it off of the server and launch the virtual machine.
We use MSDN Premium licensees for developers. With Microsoft Virtual PC 2007 SP1 and Windows Virtual PC I was able to build an environment, sysprep, and leave it on the server. Developers were able to grab the virtual machine and on the first boot up sysprep would run. After the next reboot the VM was ready for development.
Now with VMWare Workstation 7 and Windows XP SP3 after syspreping a message is displayed that says the hardware has changed significantly since the first activation and Windows needs to be reactivated. Calling Microsoft each time we need to use a virtual machine would be a hassle.
NOTE: All users are using the same revision of VMWare Workstation.
How can we get this method to work for VMWare Workstation 7 in a similar manner that it does for Microsoft Virtual PC and Windows Virtual PC?
I saw these two questions:
They did not have a suitable answer. The traditional trial time limit is not an option. Our development cycles are significantly longer than the trial periods. Because there are a lot of changes to base VMs forcing developers to restart after a certain time period is not an option.
Our developers travel frequently and are many times without an internet connection. An ESX server is unfortunately not an option.
Does anyone have any suggestions for avoiding reactivation when moving a VM between two machines?