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Does anyone know where I can get windows images for vmware.

I know Microsoft gives away the images for Virtual PC. These images work pretty well, but when I try to import them in VMware I need to activate the copies again, because the virtual hardware they use is just to different.

I want Images of different versions of windows 2000, xp, vista. Does anyone where I can download them, or do I need to build them from CD.

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up vote 6 down vote accepted

Windows images for VMware have no legal existence.

Microsoft doesn't actively market XP any more, so no trial downloads exist.
In fact, no downloads exist at all for XP except for service packs or for floppy setup diskettes! (go figure...)

Your best bets are:

  1. If you have an MSDN subscription, or know someone who does, XP is still available for download.
  2. Find someone that can loan you the XP installation CD
  3. Find an installed XP computer, and use VMware vCenter Converter to convert the physical machine to VM. The resulting VM will probably not need re-activation.
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Thank you for mentioning the MSDN subscription. I forget all about this, I have one myself. I will download them from there and do a clean install. Too bad there are no pre-installed images though, it is going to take some time to set this all up. – Saif Bechan Apr 21 '10 at 14:10

I faced the same problem around one year ago. I found out, that it is possible to import virtualpc images to vmware. So, you could download the WinXP image from Microsoft and then try this tutorial.

It helped me verry well.

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I tried a lot of tutorials like this one, but none of them could help me out. Maybe it is because I have a newer version of VMware, but it really complains when I import the virtualpc image. – Saif Bechan Apr 21 '10 at 14:13
Which version of VMWare are you using? – Diskilla Apr 21 '10 at 15:52
I use vmware 7. When I convert the image I can only use it for 3 days, I have to register my copy after that time. It also keeps asking me for the original windows CD to add certain drivers or something. – Saif Bechan Apr 21 '10 at 16:00
Alright. I guess harrymc´s answer would be the best solution then. I never worked with VMWare 7. Yet... :-) I´m going to try this tomorrow at work. Maybe I can figure out another solution. Just for interest... ^^ – Diskilla Apr 21 '10 at 16:30

If such an official would ever exist it could only be given by Microsoft itself because of license issues. Microsoft hates Vmware and Vmware hates Microsoft. So I don't think that you can find any official prebuilt Windows OS images for VMware workstation. Even if they existed they would only be on trial licenses. The best solution is to download trial iso's from Microsoft and do a clean install. After that use the base snapshot to copy this base installation. (Until the end of trial date if you're going to set your Guest OS' system date to the real date)

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