I am trying, without success, to create a bootable Win 2008 R2 VHD on my Win7 Ultimate box. I can create the VHD, in Drive Manager I can see the VHD, but when I run the 2008 R2 Setup, it never shows up in the partition listing! I just watched the entire video at http://blogs.technet.com/b/danstolts/archive/2011/08/15/boot2vhd-part-1-overview-of-native-boot-to-vhd.aspx and did not get any more clues from that. Part III is what I am trying to do as I do not want to lose my physical boot image (Win 7 Ultimate) as I have a year of fiddling to get all of my projects to run properly.

I've also looked at Scott's blog entry at http://www.hanselman.com/blog/StepByStepTurningAWindows7DVDOrISOIntoABootableVHDVirtualMachine.aspx. The auto-goodness of WIM2VHD will only install Win7 and the successor (Convert-WindowsImage.ps1) will only run if you are already on a WIn8/Win2012 image.

Any ideas?


1 Answer 1


Did you take a look at this page? This is for Windows 7, but it should be the same for 2008 R2. You may also be able to press F8 during the install to launch cmd.exe (on some versions, I can't remember for sure with 2008 R2).

  1. Boot the machine using the Windows 7 DVD
  2. Choose Windows Repair
  3. start CMD
  4. Run Diskpart
  5. Type: Create vdisk file=c:\Windows7.vhd maximum=40000 type=expandable
  6. Type: select vdisk file=c:\Windows7.vhd
  7. Type: attach vdisk (in previous Betas, it was 'surface' instead of 'attach')
  8. Type: 'exit' (you exit Windows Repair, but Do Not Reboot)
  9. Install Windows 7 to this attached .VHD (From Win7 installation, you now have to 'see' another Hard Drive, you'll need to create a partition & format it, first. You might get an error/warning saying that your computer hardware might not support this disk, just ignore it..).
  10. Reboot, and you got it!!!!
  • I am stuck on step 9. It throws an error when I click continue and will not let me past this step. I am seriously peeved! lol Commented Nov 26, 2013 at 21:45
  • Should mention; on an HP Z680. I've made some BIOS changes that finally allowed me get past step 8, but now I am stuck on step 9. I can see it (finally), I can "New" on it, I can format it but I cannot install to it. Commented Nov 26, 2013 at 21:47
  • What error are you getting when you hit step 9? What error does the Windows installer come up with? Commented Nov 27, 2013 at 0:49
  • I don't have it in front of me but it was along the lines of "Cannot install to that partition as the bios does not support that device"... Commented Nov 28, 2013 at 22:54
  • Did you run the first section of this page instructions on the host OS? Commented Nov 29, 2013 at 0:50

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .