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You are here: MacNN Forums > Software - Troubleshooting and Discussion > Alternative Operating Systems > Can VMWare use my bootcamp drive?

Can VMWare use my bootcamp drive?
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Forum Regular
Join Date: Oct 2002
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Jan 1, 2009, 07:09 AM
It's been a while sins I've been here but here goes.
I have a Mac Pro with a separate drive for OSX and a separate drive for Bootcamp.
I've never really needed windows all that much but I do now and it's a pain to reboot every time and not be able to get my stuff from the OSX drive.

I have some experience in using parallels but I'm leaning towards VMWare cause those guys have been making these programs for ages now and parallels screwed my bootcamp up one time so it's time to try something new.

What I would like to know is if VMWare can use my bootcamp DRIVE (not partition) without to much hassle.
I've googled around and all I can find is how to convert a bootcamp partition to a VMWare partition.
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Join Date: Oct 2001
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Jan 1, 2009, 02:49 PM
Boot Camp partitions do not get "converted" to Fusion partitions. It works the same way as with Parallels: the BC partition is used as the C: drive for the virtualization. I'm a Parallels guy, but I've dabbled in Fusion and it works fine with BC. The download is free so you could try it out before buying.

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Cold Warrior
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Jan 1, 2009, 03:00 PM
Yes, it should work fine. I'm actually going to do something very similar right now -- create and load a Fusion VM from a Windows XP SP2 drive that is now in an external enclosure. I'll let you know how it goes.
Cold Warrior
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Jan 1, 2009, 04:32 PM
Well I tried out my setup, which is different than Alpha's, and it didn't work out. I have VM Fusion 2.0.1 and a Windows XP SP2 installation on an external NTFS partition. This external drive's partition used to be my internal Boot Camp partition until I swapped hard drives a week ago. Anyway, I thought Fusion would be able to recognize that external partition and create a VM from it. No such luck.

Thankfully I had a winclone image of it, so I ran Boot Camp assistant and then ran Winclone to restore to that new internal drive partition. What's nice is that while Boot Camp made the partition FAT32, Winclone made it NTFS during the restore process (NTFS was the filesystem when I'd imaged it using Winclone). Now everything is back to normal -- Leopard and Windows w/ NTFS on my internal drive.

Like steve said just download the free trial. Since you're using Boot Camp successfully, Fusion should work with it just fine, but at least the free trial will confirm that.
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Join Date: Jun 2006
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Jan 3, 2009, 12:29 AM
Just like cold warrior i could not get it to work either. I use windows a lot but not as much as mac so i have a strange, maybe unnecessary set up. I have Vista running via BC for all my heavy windows things (AutoCad, FLStudio, Steam and Gaming etc) and then i run XP SP2 via VMWare ( didnt like how the new parallels acted weird with spaces and fullscreen ) and i use the virtualization for MS Office and Outlook and quick things where booting into BC would be a nuisance like backing up my blackberry or things of that nature.
/rant over
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