Moving from VMWare player to VirtualBox

Those of you using VMware player may have noticed over the last few months that the licensing has changed. It is still free for personal use but for commercial use you now need to purchase a license. You're reminded of this every time you open the application.

Fortunately it's very easy to move to VirtualBox which is released under the GNU General Public License V2.

The first time I tried to move to VirtualBox I followed the steps detailed here. This involved converting it to the OVF (open virtualization format) and then trying to import it into VirtualBox. Unfortunately I kept getting the same error that the SCSI driver was not recognised. Although this is widely recognised as the simplest way to convert from VMWare to VirtualBox I found this wasn't the case. It's much simpler to just create a new virtual machine through virtual box. Choose a name and amount of memory for the machine then when you get to the choice of hard disk select "Use an existing virtual hard drive file".

Simply select the hard drive (vmdk) that you were using for your VMWare instance. It shouldn't matter whether you had chosen to split your drive into many files or a single file, you simply have to select the drive without the -s00x appended to the name if you've chosen to split it across multiple files. Start up your machine and it should now use the disk from your original virtual machine. Remember once you've chosen to stick with VirtualBox to remove VMWare tools if you installed them and to install "guest additions" for VirtualBox.