How to install Windows or other OS and then bring to another computer by using a physical drive and Virtual Machine with QEMU

This has been a tried and true method for Windows because it is finicky with hardware changes without a reinstall (eg BSOD on boot is what happens 9/10 times unless you move to the same hardwar).  Surprisingly, if you use a QEMU VM and do a standard install, it has worked in every system I've thrown the drive in afterwards.

So the play is this, use a USB SSD, physical SATA drive plugged internally or for convenience, you could use a SATA to USB adapter on another computer to perform the install, before you move the actual drive to the destination computer (think of saving time and not having to go to another computer until the OS is installed or if you are building an image this way is easier than working with a physical machine initially).

In this example the drive you plugged in that needs Windows is "/dev/sdj". 

Just run this QEMU command, install normally and then bring the drive to the computer that needs to run it:

qemu-system-x86_64 -enable-kvm -smp 8 -m 8096 -drive file=/dev/sdj -cdrom Win10_1607_English_x64.iso
 

Change file=/dev/sdj to the dev of your drive and -cdrom to the .iso that you want to install from.


Tags:

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