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Re: Virtualizing XP with dual boot FC10/XP

On Tue, Dec 16, 2008 at 2:22 PM, Bill Davidsen <davidsen tmr com> wrote:
> Hal Meyer wrote:
>> When I try to install a new virtual machine the process wants to install
>> XP from the CD. Is there a way to just point to the XP partition on the
>> disk?
> No, you want a disk image. And I wouldn't let any install program touch this
> unless it actually said it could do such a thing. The manual run above
> should at least give you a feeling for the possibilities.

I wouldn't say that's strictly true. I have successfully booted an
existing Windows XP partition in VirtualBox but the setup is a little
complicated. I don't remember the exact command but in the VirtualBox
online documentation there is a section for it. Basically you have to
generate a .vmdk file that tells it which partitions it should have
access to. Also you'll need a MBR file since the one on your disk is
likely for Linux, not Windows (you can get this from a working Windows
XP only machine).

Then, if you want to boot the partition normally (i.e. not in a
virtual machine) then you will need to create a second hardware
profile to keep Windows from redetecting all your hardware every time
you switch from one to another. In my case I have one call Native and
one called VirtualBox.

The User Manual at virtualbox.org has all of this information. Look
for Section 9.9. The section for accessing a specific partition (not
the whole disk) and the MBR issue see section 9.9.2.


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