Creating VMware VMDK files from DD images using Live View

While watching some Florida football today I decide to figure out how to mount/run a DD image in VMware Workstation. My image mounting skills were a little lacking so Google it was. I found a ton of great examples that seemed like they should work but the steps seemed a little incomplete. To further complicate the task was I was trying to run two partitions from the same disk.

The first method I found was to manually create the VMDK file from scratch. This seemed promising when I found http://sanbarrow.com/vmdk/disktypes.html#partitionedDevice and even better an AppSpot application http://www.schatzforensic.com.au/2006/p2v/ to produce the configuration for me but determining the CHS values were not going very well with the images I was working with so I kept looking.

ProDiscover looked rather promising https://irhowto.wordpress.com/2010/07/05/booting-a-dd-image-with-vmware/ but the VMDK files generated for the images did not seem correct and sure enough the guest system would not fire.

Live View was the next tool to try. Initial attempts to use it on a Windows 7 x64 host failed so I moved the image and required tools to a Windows XP host. There are several prerequisites for Live View which it will prompt you for so heads up.

You will need to create a VMDK for each image that you want to use even if it is for the same VM guest. The coolest part of it all is that you can use the DD image in a read-only state and all write are saved to a separate state/snapshot file. Very nice as it keeps from trashing the original image.

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