Recovering a Virtual Machine

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Recovering a Virtual Machine

Postby FrankTheRed » 26. Jul 2010, 23:19

Hello,
I have been running Virtualbox OSE on Ubuntu 8.04 for a year now (version 1.5.6
modified by Ubuntu distibution: 1.5.6-dfsg-6ubuntu1), with a Windows XP guest.
That PC has now died :( and I replaced it with a new one featuring Ubuntu 10.04;
this came with Virtualbox 3.1.6-dfsg-2ubuntu2.
How can I recover my old Virtual machine?
- I tried to build an old Virtualbox version (the closest version number available
in the repository is 1.6.6) but had some build problems: first it did not like my
compiler (gcc 4:4.4.3) but I forced this by commenting it out in .configure;
later however the build failed (note: do I really need to change compiler??) :shock:
- I tried to install a new Virtual machine using the VDIs of my old installation,
but it would not work :?
- I tried to copy the full userspace files (VDIs, Machines, and all .VirtualBox
directory, but VB does not like it either: Failed to create the VirtualBox COM object.
The application will now terminate. Error in /home/FrankTheRed/.VirtualBox/VirtualBox.xml
(line 3) -- Cannot handle settings version '1.2-linux'. /build/buildd/virtualbox-ose-3.1.6-dfsg/
src/VBox/Main/VirtualBoxImpl.cpp[420] (nsresult VirtualBox::init()). :cry:
Is there any way I could give back life to my old XP VirtualMachine? The reason I need
do this is that I had some Windows software installed for which I do not have the installation
disks. If I had a clue which is the best approach, I could try and work it out. :)
Many thanks!
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Re: Recovering a Virtual Machine

Postby Perryg » 26. Jul 2010, 23:32

Can you see the VDI file and did you have snapshots?
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Re: Recovering a Virtual Machine

Postby FrankTheRed » 29. Jul 2010, 18:51

Perryg wrote:Can you see the VDI file and did you have snapshots?


Hello,
Thanks for replying! I still have the VDI file of course, but I have no way of
looking into it with VirtualBox 3.1.6. since booting Windows XP from it fails
with a blue screen (and an endless loop of quick reboots). I also cannot read
it from a Windows 7 virtual machine :(
Since VB 3.1.6 has the following options for IDE controller: PIIX4, PIIX3, ICH6,
I wonder whether this is a compatibility problem with the old VB 1.5.6.... don't
know...
Snapshots: I never used them with VB, but there is some good probability that
my old machine was closed in the "Save the Machine state" mode.
If you have any clue on what I should do, I'd be very happy :D
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Re: Recovering a Virtual Machine

Postby FrankTheRed » 15. Aug 2010, 11:11

Hello Perryg, hello everyone,

No more answers to my question, is it because it is considered silly or uninteresting?
If anyone can point to some web page with an explanation on how to do it, thanks.....
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Re: Recovering a Virtual Machine

Postby JKyleOKC » 15. Aug 2010, 16:25

Have you tried creating a new VM in the new version of VB, but attaching the old VDI as its drive? This should solve the problem of having an incompatible xml file, but the WinXP boot problem might persist. I've got the same reboot-loop problem with one of my VMs here although four others all work properly...

In the past I've used the "new VM but old VDI" trick to recover from other problems, and it works so long as you don't have another VM running that uses the same VDI. The check for duplicated drives happens during startup of the VM but looks only at other running VMs.
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Re: Recovering a Virtual Machine

Postby vbox4me2 » 15. Aug 2010, 18:03

Look at the type of IDE controller you have assigned for this VM, old VM's sometimes need piix3.
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Re: Recovering a Virtual Machine

Postby mpack » 16. Aug 2010, 11:22

And once you've got it booting again, go into My Computer Properties | Advanced | Startup and Recovery Settings Button and uncheck the "Automatically restart" button. This lets you see the error message and perhaps diagnose the cause.
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Howto record bluescreen information

Postby baf » 16. Aug 2010, 14:52

From the manual:
12.3.4 How to record bluescreen information from Windows guests
When Windows guests run into a kernel crash, they display the infamous bluescreen. Depending on how Windows is configured, the information will remain on the screen until the machine is restarted or it will reboot automatically. During installation, Win- dows is usually configured to reboot automatically. With automatic reboots, there is no chance to record the bluescreen information which might be important for problem determination.
VirtualBox provides a method of halting a guest when it wants to perform a reset. In order to enable this feature, issue the following command:
VBoxManage setextradata "VM name" "VBoxInternal/PDM/HaltOnReset" 1
Some say: "You learn as long as you live".
My way: "You live as long as you learn".
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Re: Recovering a Virtual Machine

Postby FrankTheRed » 19. Aug 2010, 22:33

JKyleOKC wrote:Have you tried creating a new VM in the new version of VB, but attaching the old VDI as its drive? This should solve the problem of having an incompatible xml file, but the WinXP boot problem might persist. I've got the same reboot-loop problem with one of my VMs here although four others all work properly...


Hello, thanks for your reply.
Yes, I have tried to create a new VM attaching the old VDI, but I get a Windows blue screen :(

JKyleOKC wrote:In the past I've used the "new VM but old VDI" trick to recover from other problems, and it works so long as you don't have another VM running that uses the same VDI. The check for duplicated drives happens during startup of the VM but looks only at other running VMs.


Could you tell me where to find this "trick"? Thanks!
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Re: Howto record bluescreen information

Postby FrankTheRed » 19. Aug 2010, 22:45

baf wrote:From the manual:
12.3.4 How to record bluescreen information from Windows guests
When Windows guests run into a kernel crash, they display the infamous bluescreen. Depending on how Windows is configured, the information will remain on the screen until the machine is restarted or it will reboot automatically. During installation, Win- dows is usually configured to reboot automatically. With automatic reboots, there is no chance to record the bluescreen information which might be important for problem determination.
VirtualBox provides a method of halting a guest when it wants to perform a reset. In order to enable this feature, issue the following command:
VBoxManage setextradata "VM name" "VBoxInternal/PDM/HaltOnReset" 1


Very precious and it works, thanks!!!
The error message seems to be the following:

*** STOP: 0x0000007B (0xFAF7B528, 0xC0000034, 0x00000000, 0x00000000)
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Re: Recovering a Virtual Machine

Postby FrankTheRed » 19. Aug 2010, 22:52

vbox4me2 wrote:Look at the type of IDE controller you have assigned for this VM, old VM's sometimes need piix3.


Hey, it works, thanks a lot!!!!!
I am sure I had tried it before without success :o
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Re: Recovering a Virtual Machine

Postby FrankTheRed » 19. Aug 2010, 23:25

mpack wrote:And once you've got it booting again, go into My Computer Properties | Advanced | Startup and Recovery Settings Button and uncheck the "Automatically restart" button. This lets you see the error message and perhaps diagnose the cause.


Done that too!

It was the PIIX3 problem: don't know why it had not worked when I had tried it the first time...

Thanks everybody for your help, everything works again! :D
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Re: Recovering a Virtual Machine

Postby JKyleOKC » 20. Aug 2010, 03:50

Didn't work for me, although I did get the reboot loop broken so that I could see the error message. In my case, the controller was already piix3. The error message comes from "lsass.exe" during boot and shows an error code of 0xC0000001 while claiming that "a device is not functioning" but does not identify the device.

The first time I tried to boot after running the fix program, CHKDSK /F ran automatically and removed several orphan items. I suspect that this was what did me in...

EDIT: Restored the file from backup and ran the fix program again. This time everything worked, so I'm happy with it.
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Re: Recovering a Virtual Machine

Postby FrankTheRed » 20. Aug 2010, 20:18

JKyleOKC wrote:EDIT: Restored the file from backup and ran the fix program again. This time everything worked, so I'm happy with it.


Thinking back about it, I believe that this was the case for me too. Before writing to this forums I had done lots af attempts, changing all possible options in the Virtualbox menus, including the PIIX3 one, but they did not work. My virtual disk must have been courrupted by those attemps.
Yesterday, before trying again, I had restored the VDI in its original form from a backup copy... and it worked.
Did not run any "fix program" though (don't know about it...).
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Re: Recovering a Virtual Machine

Postby vbox4me2 » 20. Aug 2010, 21:56

As a guideline for recovery, always set the vdi to immutable until you figured out what's wrong. Indeed trying can mess up things badly as the vdi gets written to by its OS.
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