V2V Converter from StarWind – White Paper

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PUBLISHED/UPDATED: October 26th, 2020


Versatility and convenience turned virtualization into a worldwide trend. Specifically, virtual machine utilization became a routine for companies worldwide. Vendor diversity, however, came to result in VM format conflicts. Every vendor has developed and promotes its own VM disk format. As virtualization popularity grew, easy migration from physical to virtual or from one environment to another became a dire need. StarWind V2V Converter allows establishing a secure and fast exchange between all VM formats as well as P2V conversion.


Different hypervisors use different VM formats. Therefore, when a company wants to switch from vSphere to Hyper-V, it’s paramount that all data is moved to the new environment properly. However, it is impossible to achieve without converting VMs into the format of the target hypervisor. Another case: Enterprise ROBO solutions may involve different hypervisors in the main office and at remote locations, making it inconvenient to move VMs between them. In addition, when working with different sets of hardware, moved VMs may experience compatibility issues. Having the ability to switch VM formats on demand is essential for any virtual environment.

Migrating from a physical to a virtual machine can be a complex and time-consuming process, especially in multi-server environments. P2V involves the migration of OS, applications, and data from the source hardware to a virtual machine. Most of the existing solutions require labor-consuming operations: setting up hardware parameters, installing the OS, and then adding the necessary applications to the OS inside the VM. Also, there is the problem of solving conversion issues constantly. Finally, everything needs an extensive test to eliminate data loss.


StarWind V2V Converter transforms virtual machines freely from one format to another. It works with all major VM formats, namely VHD/VHDX, VMDK, QCOW2, and StarWind-native IMG. You can check the detailed list of supported VM disk formats in the StarWind V2V Converter Help: Specifications section.

Both the source and target VM copies exist simultaneously because the conversion procedure is more like cloning than replacement. This way the chance of data corruption and loss during conversion is completely avoided. Moreover, StarWind V2V Converter basically creates a backup copy of the VMs, making the process even safer.

When converting the VM to VHDX format, StarWind V2V Converter enables the activation of Windows Repair Mode. This way the virtual machine will automatically adapt to the given hardware environment and negate any compatibility problems.

In comparison to the hypervisors’ built-in converters that only work one way (converting to their original VM format), StarWind V2V Converter is much more efficient, because it works both ways, converting any format into another one and back.

StarWind V2V Converter enables an easy migration of physical machines to virtual ones on Hyper-V and ESXi servers. Running the utility on the source physical storage, you can easily convert the entire system the way it is into the desired virtual machine disk format that will be located on a remote hypervisor server. It should also be noted that StarWind V2V Converter preserves data consistency by using VSS snapshots while reading disk data from the live machine. You can see the detailed list of supported MS Windows machines in the StarWind V2V Converter Help: Specifications section.


StarWind V2V Converter helps take advantage of the VM format diversity. It allows converting between VM formats, basically “cloning” VMs and keeping the original copy intact at the same time. The solution supports a variety of VM formats to convert them one way and back in a secure and reliable way. Additionally, the tool supports P2V migration to ensure easy and safe copying of the physical system into a virtualized platform.

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