Two Methods to Convert VDI to VMDK VMware File In Windows

Summary: In this technical paper we will be covering how to convert VDI to VMDK. Here 2 easy and secure methods are shown to convert virtualbox vdi file to VMware vmdk file. Let’s start.

Reason To Migrate from Virtualbox to VMware:

This is clearly something you may want to do if you appear to be a virtualization fan and you’re running both VirtualBox and one of VMware products. The reasons for conversion could be many, including the need to preserve a license or a machine state, run it in different software for compatibility testing and who knows what other reasons virtualization users may have.

Anyhow, today, in through this post,  I’m going to show you two definite ways of how you can convert your vdi(Virtual Disk Image) format, used by VirtualBox to vmdk format, used by VMware, and the other way around. Furthermore, you will also learn how to convert to other formats, should you fancy them, including VHD, RAW, and others. We will be using tools like the VBoxManage command line utility and QEMU, and take a look at how to convert corrupt VDI Files to VMDK Online. All combined, this tutorial will significantly enhance the flexibility and portability of our setup to convert vdi to vmdk.

Convert VDI To VMDK In Windows 

Virtualization allows you to run multiple operating systems on one system. There are several popular virtual hard disk formats in use such as VDI and VMDK. Oracle VirtualBox is a free virtualization platform and supports Windows, Mac, and Linux. It can boot all three major hard disk formats and has the ability to convert existing virtual hard disks to other formats using its command-line tool. Virtualbox uses the VDI format by default.

Important Note: Keep in mind before converting VDI to VMDK, make sure to eliminate snapshots in VirtualBox. As each snapshot keeps different hard disk files separately from major disk files. So if you convert the major VDI file to VMDK then you will get the first version of the virtual machine before any snapshots. Therefore we have to merge all snapshots to major disk files to get the latest virtual machine in VMware. By removing snapshots you can merge all snapshot hard disks to the main hard disk file.

Conversion Process 1: Using VBoxManage Utility

  • Firstly, Download and install the latest version of Oracle Virtualbox if it is not already installed.
  • Secondly., Click the “Windows” key and “R” to bring up a “Run” dialog box. Type cmd and hit the enter button to start a command prompt.
  • Now Type “cd C:\Program Files\Oracle\VirtualBox” command. And  Change the “C” drive to the location of your “Program Files” folder.
  • In the command prompt run the following command:

     VBoxManage clonehd source.vdi target.vmdk –format VMDK 

  • Press “Enter.” Replace both instances of “filename” with the actual files you want to import and export. For example, you could type “VBoxManage clonehd C:\Users\Test\linux.vdi C:\Users\Test\linux.vmdk –format vmdk” if you have a VDI file named “linux.vdi” in the “C:\Users\Test” directory.

Conversion Process 2: Using QEMU Manager

Here is another method to convert vdi to vmdk. Follow the steps to use qemu manager with your windows machine to convert vdi to vmdk without Virtualbox:

  • Get QEMU Manager for your Windows System.
  • In “cmd” run the following qemu-img convert command 

                qemu-img convert qbc.vdi -O vmdk qbc.vmdk

  • Click enter to initiate vdi to vmdk conversion process.

General Tips:

Although you can be much adjustable with your conversions, you should take into account that VMware and VirtualBox support things a little differently. Some times some conversion may fail if you have special stuff enabled, like multi-processors, video acceleration, and other cool things.

Therefore, if your conversions are not successful, consider doing the following:

  • Merge multiple disks files into one.
  • Disable any video acceleration or special features.
  • Delete snapshots.
  • Uninstall VMware Tools and/or Guest Additions.
  • Try to match the virtual machine settings between the source and destination.
  • If VDI is damaged then it is really tough to achieve the vdi to vmdk conversion process. So you can fix the VDI file issues with VDI Recovery Software with ease.

Time To Conclude

So if you have created a VM file using windows VirtualBox and need to have a way to add it to your VMware farm or ESXi system, but the VirtualBox VM is in VDI format. No worries, in the above discussion we have told you 2 different techniques by which you can convert vdi to vmdk VMware with ease. Till then keep reading.

You can also read: How to convert VMDK to VHD easily