I have a legacy machine from IBM (A Netfinity 7100) running a Windows 2000 SP4 server OS. We are trying to move it to a virtual environment (KVM under Linux) to decommission this old, costly hardware. We have tried everything we know so far with no luck. This machine is also configured with SCSI drives attached to a RAID card. What we have tried so far includes:

-Clonezilla: Fails to load as it seems to lack some drivers (I think it is the RAID card one).

-VMWare Converter: No way to install it. We don't have enough free hard drive space and, although it allows us to select another disk for installation, it wont install and will insist on doing it on the System drive.

-Citrix Converter: Again, no way to install it for the same reasons.

At this point we have no more ideas to proceed with. Has anybody got any experience on such systems?. I know P2V under W2000 can be more painful than other, newer Windows releases as I have performed this, but that it can be done.

My main concern is the RAID driver, but I suppose that if I find any Linux distro that works on this hardware, there will be any procedure (like dd and ssh) to achieve this.

By the way, I will also love if someone can provide me with some alternatives (software, procedures, linux ways to do this, etc..) to achieve this.

Thanks a lot in advance,



I successfully moved some Windows 2000 machines from bare hardware to Linux/KVM, so this is surely possible. I suggest you the following procedure:

  • using "ntbackup" utility, backup all data from system disk. Check ntbackup advanced options to be really sure to backup all files
  • take note of Windows 2000 SP level and machine type (eg: ACPI uniprocessor, you can find it under "device manager -> computer")
  • on KVM, install a clean Windows 2000 image (using KVM's generic IDE driver) and bring it to the same SP level. Be sure to use the same machine type as the one you are migrating (KVM has various options to configure ACPI and APIC. Anyway, after the installation, you can change machine type under the same "device manager -> computer" menu)
  • after the new Win200 machine is up and running, restore your backup image (taken with ntbackup) over it. Be sure to replace all files (check ntbackup advanced options)
  • reboot and the machine should be successfully migrated.

If that fails, try another procedure:

  • boot your Win2000 machine using a Linux Live image (eg: Fedora, CentOS Live)
  • if the machine boots and if it identifies your disk/volumes, use dd of (better) ddrescue to take a copy of the system disk
  • restore this copy under KVM

What can be wrong
In both cases, your restored Win2000 images could not boot (under KVM) due to the infamous "inaccessible boot device" error. This means that Win2000 can not talk to the virtualized disk controller. To workaround that, go back to your physical Win2000 server and, using the "Add new hardware wizard", install a generic IDE driver. The re-try to export and import it.

  • Thanks a lot for the complete response. I will check both procedures ASAP (which could be probably next weekend). I will give you a positive vote in the meantime ;-). Oh no!, it requires 15 points to vote... I will have to wait for the solution to work (I expect so). – kankamuso Apr 13 '15 at 8:09
  • It seems I forgot to mention that I finally solved it using the mergeide solution and an Acronis full backup and restore on the virtual machine. No problems but a lot of trials... – kankamuso May 8 '15 at 15:35

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