You might desire to convert VMware VMs to Hyper-V because you are running multiple virtualizations, or looking for a more cost-effective alternative. Here in this article, you will learn 3 different ways to convert VMware to Hyper-V and the best practices before the conversion. Here are some related guides: How To Deploy Azure VMware Solution Private Cloud, What are the differences between vSphere, ESXi and vCenter, and how to install Windows Server 2022 on VMware Workstation, and how to install and configure Hyper-V Cluster On Windows Server via PowerShell and Server Manager.
What is VMware and Hyper-V?
VMware is a virtualization and cloud computing vendor that enjoys long history since 1998 in the industry with various products for virtual machine and cloud operations such as ESXi and Workstation hypervisors, vSphere management, vRealize Suite could management, etc. As a widely popular choice for various IT environments, VMware attracts global customers due to its high data availability, fault tolerance, fully functioning ecosystem, and other advanced features.
Microsoft Hyper-V is a bare-metal hypervisor shipped with Windows Server that has migration flexibility between physical hosts, storage migration from a running VM to another, high availability, and server scalability without purchasing new hardware. Also, data safety in Hyper-V is guaranteed with the isolation of the parent and child partitions. Best of all, it saves money and is cost-effective for users.
Now you might want to test something out, run a multi-hypervisor environment, or look for a more reasonable price. In either case, you must migrate VMware virtual machines to Hyper-V, and Microsoft offers three methods to assist you in doing so.
Data Migration Tools
Microsoft Virtual Machine Converter (MVMC): A free standalone conversion program with GUI that converts virtual machines and disks from VMware VMs to Hyper-V hosts. Although it can still be downloaded, its official support stopped on June 3, 2017. So, use this method with caution. Notice that MVMC 3 doesn’t support Hyper-V Generation 2 VMs.
VMDK to VHD conversion with PowerShell and attach converted files: When you only have the virtual disk files, such as the VMX configuration files, this method works for both VMware Workstation and VMware ESXi VMs.
System Center Virtual Machine Manager (SCVMM): A Microsoft Virtual Server and Hyper-V-based management solution, as well as a VMware and Hyper-V system conversion tool.
Before the data migration, some actions must be taken to prevent issues.
- Eject virtual CD to prevent any disruption and remove any unnecessary virtual devices, such as COM and virtual floppy drives (add later for Generation-1 Hyper-V).
- To save storage, remove unnecessary virtual hard disk files, programs, and other VM elements.
- To cut down on mistakes, remove or consolidate VM snapshots.
- Prior to convert online, uninstall VMware Tools. The MVMC utilities could be manually uninstalled because it simply disables VMware services for Windows OS during offline conversion.
Way 1: Convert a VMware VM to Hyper-V with MVMC (For ESXi)
Launch the Microsoft Virtual Machine Converter (MVMC), and select Virtual machine conversion as the Machine Type. Then click Next.
- Select Migrate to Hyper-V on the Migration Destination page, then click Next.
- Enter the name/IP address of the destination host and access privilege user on Hyper-V Host page. Click Next to proceed.
- Set the Disk options and specify a location where the converted virtual hard disks will be stored. Recommend not to use the system disk for storing in production environments. Choose the virtual hard disk type for the converted disk between Fixed size (thick-provisioned) and Dynamically expanding (thin-provisioned). Select the converted disk format between VHD and VHDX. Click Next.
- Input the address, username, and password on the Source page to connect to ESXi/vCenter server. Click Next.
- Select the conversion virtual machine from the list on Virtual Machine page, then click Next.
- On Connection page,provide the root account username and password of the source VM for uninstallation if it has VMware Tools. On/Off the Final state of source and destination virtual machines. Click Next.
- Click Browse… on the Workspace screen to choose a folder where temporary files for the conversion process will be kept, then select Next.
- Review all the setup details you provided on the Summary screen, and then click Finish to begin the conversion.
- See the status on the Completion page and click Close when it’s finished.
Way 2: Converting VMDK to VHD with PowerShell (For ESXi or Workstation)
1: Export target VMware VMs to OVF template or copy virtual disk files from ESXi hosts to the VM with MVMC installed using VMware vSphere or any SCP client. We need the .vmdk file.
2: Start PowerShell as an administrator and enter the command to add the converter module.
3: List the files in the VM directory and note the VMDK file name for the next step.
4: Convert VMDK into VHDX:
ConvertTo-MvmcVirtualHardDisk -SourceLiteralPath “VMDKfile-path-and-name.vmdk” -DestinationLiteralPath “newfilepath\newfilename” -VhdType Fixedsize/DynamicHardDisk -VhdFormat Vhd/x
4: Attach the converted disk to Hyper-V.
5: Open Hyper-V Manager, go to the Actions pane, click
New>Virtual Machine to create a new VM.
6: Follow the steps of New Virtual Machine Wizard andclick Next on Before You Begin page.
7: Specify the new Virtual Machine Name and Location. Click Next.
8: Choose the Generation 1 or 2 base, and click Next.
9: Assign the memory for the VM from the physical PC, and click Next.
10: On Configure Networking page, select New Virtual Switch or Not Connection (don’t have or want to connect in LAN) from Connection dropdown list.
11: On Connect Victual Hard Disk, select Use an existing virtual hard disk and click Browse… to select the hard disk. Click Next.
12: On Summary page, click Finish, and click twice in New Victual Machine. Then finally, click Power on to start.
Way 3: Convert a VMware VM to Hyper-V with SCVMM (For ESXi)
Notes: VMM 2022 supported VMware servers: ESX/ESXi 6.5, 6.7 and vCenter 6.5, 6.7.
– Unsupported conversion subjects: VMware workstations, virtual machines with hard disks connected to an IDE bus and online conversions.
– Power off anti-virus apps and VMware VMs.
– Uninstall VMware Tools from the guest OS.
- Open VMs and Services.
- On the Home page, click Create Virtual Machine in Create group. Then click Convert Virtual Machine.
- Click Select Source in the Convert Virtual Machine wizard, the Browse and select the VMware VMs to be converted in Select Virtual Machine Source.
- On Specify Virtual Machine Identity page, specify the VM name and optional description.
- On Virtual Machine Configuration pane, set the number of processors and the memory size (in megabytes or gigabytes).
- On the Select Host page, choose a Hyper-V host for placement and configure the storage location for the VM in Select Path. The default path is listed, and for another different location, click Browse and the folder. You could also add a path by selecting Add this path to the list of default storage locations on the host.
- On the Select Networks page, select the virtual network, the logical network, or the virtual LAN (VLAN).
- On the Add Properties page, set up the required configurations and review settings in the Summary pane. Choose Start the virtual machine after deploying it optionally.
- Click Create to start. Confirm the Completed job status in the Jobs dialog, then close it.
- In VMs and Services > Home > Show > VMs, confirm the conversion of the VM.
Backup VMs for Data Insurance before Risky Operations with Vinchin
Whether it is a safety assurance measure during V2V migration between VMware and Hyper-V, or data loss prevention in daily operation, backup is one of the best ways to secure data safe and sound in case of file corruption, cyberattacks, migration errors, and more.
Vinchin Backup & Recovery is a compatible and centrally managed VM and database protection solution for more than 10+ virtualization and mainstream databases, for instance, VMware, Hyper-V, Citrix Hypervisor (previously XenServer), XCP-ng, oVirt, Red Hat Virtualization, Oracle OLVM, OpenStack, etc.
Agentless backup: interacts with hypervisor rather than a backup agent, thus less resource consumption and easier installation.
Automated backup: Choose from full, differential, incremental, and CBT-helped forever incremental backup strategies on settable backup schedules, and enable mail alert notifications to automate the whole backup process.
Saved backup storage: Compress and deduplicate backup data optionally to save 50% of room for newly written data, and exclude swap files, unpartitioned space and partition gap with a unique Vinchin BitDetector.
Cross-platform V2V migration: Effortlessly convert one virtualization into another with cross-platform recovery in 4 steps without extra tools or agents needed.
Anti-Ransomware data protection: Comprehensively secures data backups in Vinchin server through various technologies, for example, backup storage protection denies any suspicious visits except those of Vinchin applications, data archiving to public clouds, double data encryption during and after backup process, etc.
15s instant recovery: Restore a crashed VM from the backup repository or an offsite backup copy saved in another location in seconds for seamless business continuity.
On VM Backup>Backup page, choose a target backup source from the licensed backup server list.
Choose backup destination, target node and storage under it for the backup VM.
Configure backup strategies.
– Set up backup options and schedules based on your business needs.
Configure backup reduction techniques, retention policy, and more strategies under the General Strategy.
Enable transmission modes for different VMs and needs.
Define block size, quiesced snapshot, and CBT optionally.
And last, review all the settings and submit the job.
In this article, I described three techniques for converting VMware virtual machines to Hyper-V: MVMC, PowerShell, and SCVMM. Though MVMC had been retired by Microsoft, you could still migrate using another third-party method or the commercial conversion product SCVMM.
Please keep in mind, nonetheless, that backup is the absolute best form of safety insurance before any V2V migration progress or data loss events. Now you can backup and restore data from 10+ platforms using Vinchin Backup & Recovery, and you can conveniently manage your backups from a single dashboard. Vinchin Backup & Recovery simplifies VM backup process into 4 steps, you can download the 60-day full-featured free trial to try.