Real HDD as boot disk

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Real HDD as boot disk

Postby hornetster » 2. Aug 2021, 06:11

I have a real Windows HDD (2 parts - 1x system reserved + 1x data), in an external usb reader. Partitions being accessed fine. (from a Win VB machine)
Wondering if I can use this as a VirtualBox HDD?
Reason: want to mount the disk in Linux, but linux complaining that the disk hasn't been shutdown properly. Have tried opening and checking disk in a Win10 virtual machine, checks with no errors, but linux still complaining.

Thanks.
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Re: Real HDD as boot disk

Postby scottgus1 » 3. Aug 2021, 17:36

hornetster wrote:linux complaining that the disk hasn't been shutdown properly

Check to see if the win 10 OS is hibernating or has fast start enabled, or try shutting it down with the "shutdown -s -t 0" command, which causes a full old-school shutdown.

Otherwise, running a physical disk as a VM boot disk is called "raw disk access". It is in the manual, but it is an experts-only feature, since there is much opportunity to hose the PC if it is done wrong.

Windows will also see the OS's hardware all change (since the OS is now booting on Virtualbox "hardware" instead of the original motherboard, and it may ask for an activation, which would deactivate the original hardware.
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Re: Real HDD as boot disk

Postby hornetster » 4. Aug 2021, 11:41

scottgus1 wrote:
hornetster wrote:linux complaining that the disk hasn't been shutdown properly

Check to see if the win 10 OS is hibernating or has fast start enabled, or try shutting it down with the "shutdown -s -t 0" command, which causes a full old-school shutdown.

Thanks for the reply.
My immediate issue is that I need to access the disk (data only), but Linux will not mount it due to it not being shutdown properly.
Don't need to 'run' it, as such, but thought that may be an easy fix, so I can then open in Linux.
hornetster
 
Posts: 19
Joined: 10. Jan 2013, 13:24
Location: Wide Bay, Qld, Australia
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Re: Real HDD as boot disk

Postby scottgus1 » 4. Aug 2021, 16:40

If the host disk won't access the drive then Raw Disk is the only way I know of to try to access it in Virtualbox, since the disk doesn't get mounted in the host OS.

However, it may be a good idea to see if Windows will access it by attaching the USB carrier to a physical Windows PC. If Windows on a physical PC will not access it either, then Windows in a VM won't access it.
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