We got our hands on the Converter Enterprise License & download RTM, so I guess it is time to write a small (first impressions) review...
OK, VMware Converter (Enterprise) is cool. But we already knew that... I tested a migration with the coldclone.iso (WinPE environment, offline P2V) mounted as virtual media via ILO. Works like a charm. It looks similar to the online version, but it does not have (duh..) the license part. Instead, a network configuration item is available to change IP/DNS/WINS settings or map a network drive.
You can also use the PETool to add extra drivers to the WinPE environment.
During the conversion wizard, you can select disk layouts, add/remove any detected disks, resize disks, install VMware Tools, reSID the VM, rename the VM, select the appropriate datastore, etc. The usual stuff, actually.
If you would like to use the online version, just install the application and activate the license (via Administration => License Information). The license must be created via the vmware licensing website. A VmwareSoftware.lic file (host-based) is created in the same format (FlexLM) as a "real" VI3 host- or server-based license:
INCREMENT P2V_ENTERPRISE VMWARELM 3.0 permanent uncounted \
VENDOR_STRING=licenseType=production;count=-1 HOSTID=ANY \
ISSUED=26-Jan-2007 NOTICE=FulfillmentId=123456 SIGN="1234 1234 \
1234 1234 1234 1234 1234 1234 1234 1234 1234 \
1234 1234 1234 1234 1234 1234 1234 1234 1234 1234 1234 1234 \
1234 1234 1234 1234 1234 "
After installing the license, you have an unlimited set of concurrent tasks (allrighty!) and a new source type is available: A remote machine. License information also states that the expiry date is set to <never expire>. As you can see, the .lic file can be used on HOSTID=ANY and is uncounted and permanent.
However, I noticed some problems/disadvantages using the bootCD:
- No vCPU & memory selection possible.
- It takes a (very) long time for the P2V process to take off
- You cannot select NIC speed & duplex settings (!) when performing an offline P2V. In some environments (including ours) this can result in terrible copy performance, as autonegotiate might set the NIC to half duplex 10/100...
- The memory is not set correctly in the newly created VM, I had 1024 Mb RAM physical memory, the VM only had 1020... (but is a known issue)
- The help file states RC1_help ;)
This is just a first impression, and I didn't RTFM. It does not compare to PlateSpin PowerConvert's "power", but is definitely a good option for P2V migrations... A nice addition to the P2V arsenal.
Ow, and BTW, VMware P2V Assistant is dead ;)