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JoBoy
10-20-2009, 09:24 PM
I currently do not use VMware or Windows on my Mac Pro. The plan is to purchase Fusion 3 when it is released next week. Windows XP Sp 3 will be used until I learn whether Windows 7 works well in Fusion 3. My issue right now is the best practice for backing up a VMware image assuming the VM virtual machine package file type does not change with a new Fusion version. These questions do NOT involve Boot Camp. VMware discourages regular Time Machine backups because of the accumulation of images that will choke the backup drive in a single day. If it is true that Super Duper's sparse bundle does not radically increase in size from repeated copies, I would be happy to include VMware in nightly backups using SD. This raises several questions in my mind:

What is the file type of VMware's virtual machine package (.vmwarevm)?

If it is a sparse image or sparse bundle, will SD be copying a VM sparse image or bundle to SD's own sparse bundle when I back up to my networked Time Capsule?

Does that kind of copying work reliably?

Will it function reliably when the destination copy is restored to the main drive after successful repair or replacement of the main hard drive?

Do Windows anti-piracy measures cause problems when Windows-in-VMware is copied by SD from one internal drive to another on the same computer?

How about copying Windows-in-VMware to a networked Time Capsule?

If I were to replace my current Mac Pro with a new Mac Pro, would it be the best practice to insert a hard drive containing an SD clone from the old Mac into a bay on the new Mac and then proceed to install the system on the new Mac's main drive using the new installation disk and import the apps, settings and data from the old drive when the installer calls for it?

How would I do this going from a Mac Pro to a new 27" iMac?

Sorry for the list, but each scenario, except the last one, has already happened to me, but those events did not involve VMware or Windows.

dnanian
10-20-2009, 10:54 PM
I copy my own VMWare images every time I back up. Note that VMWare should NOT be running when you actually perform a backup... and it doesn't matter what you're copying from.

Migration from your direct-to-drive backup (see the FAQ) is the best way to move to a new Mac. It's easy to do.

JoBoy
10-21-2009, 12:19 AM
I copy my own VMWare images every time I back up. Note that VMWare should NOT be running when you actually perform a backup... and it doesn't matter what you're copying from.

Migration from your direct-to-drive backup (see the FAQ) is the best way to move to a new Mac. It's easy to do.
I read the FAQs before posting. The questions I posted were items that were not clear to me from reading the FAQs and VMware's web site. You cleared nearly all of it up with your reply, but what I'm still not too sure about is whether Windows cooperates during restore if a main drive has to be repaired or replaced and the SD! sparse bundle is the source or if a clone from an internal drive or external Firewire drive is used as the source. I've had way too much experience installing system software over the past couple of months and I successfully used the method you recommend. I guess the real reason I'm looking for specific reassurance about Windows' cooperation is all of the anti-piracy propaganda that MS uses on users of PCs including the mandatory, ironically named Windows Genuine Advantage app. The only advantage in it is Microsoft's. I've had a Dell XPS for 5 years that just died so that's why I'm moving to VMWare on my Mac, but visions of the anti-piracy efforts make me edgy that, with all of the file manipulation involved in saving and restoring Windows, something will blow up.

dnanian
10-21-2009, 08:23 AM
There is no way for me to answer that definitively, except to say that the image on the drive is a virtual disk, and should maintain its state after being copied. Perhaps VMWare people can help?

JoBoy
10-21-2009, 11:02 AM
There is no way for me to answer that definitively, except to say that the image on the drive is a virtual disk, and should maintain its state after being copied. Perhaps VMWare people can help?

Fair enough. I'll try them. Thanks for your candor and continuing, excellent service and attention. It is the best value in the business--by far!

MacCetera
10-22-2009, 12:01 AM
... that's why I'm moving to VMWare on my Mac...

<offtopic>
You might want to look at VirtualBox from Sun Microsystems. It's FREE, well supported, frequently updated, runs XP and Linux very nicely. I've played with VMWare and Parallels on client Macs, and prefer VirtualBox.
</offtopic>

As for SD copying the virtual image, as Dave said DON'T be running the virtual machine while the copy is in progress. Other than that, the virtual image is "just another file" and copying and restoring it has no effect on the contents... like most Mac things, it just works.

-- Marc

JoBoy
10-22-2009, 12:06 AM
Thank you both for the suggestions, warnings, and reassurance. All are appreciated.

JoBoy
10-22-2009, 12:33 AM
I went to virtualbox.org and read the introductory material. It's too developer-oriented for my comfort. In addition, it's free for "personal use." Most of my computer time is spent doing paying work. I've decided to pass. Thanks for the heads up, though.