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Server 2003 on XenServer 8.2


Bill Artemik

Question

We have a client with a legacy software package running on a VM under Windows Server 2003. We have migrated their virtual environment from XenServer 7.2 to 8.2 EXCEPT for this one virtual machine. We need to get this moved. We're looking for ANY solutions. They cannot upgrade the Server 2003 OS and they cannot move the application. Is there ANY way to get this machine moved to the 8.2 version of XenServer? We tried just Export and Import and that worked GREAT until we booted the VM and it just dies (paused, then halted). We have backups of the system...is there any platform on XenServer 8.2 we can use to restore this machine?

 

Any help is graciously appreciated.

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What you might have to do is uninstall the XenTools before you export/import.  I'm not running the 8.x versions, but I'm surprised that it 

doesn't boot properly. If XenTools is the culprit maybe you can run the VM with older tools or without tools. Snapshot it before you remove

the XenTools in case something goes wrong (like it not booting or blue screening).

 

--Alan--

 

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We will try to remove the XenTools and export it and import it to see if it will run. We understand that 2003 is long past its functional life but that doesn't stop some companies from using the product. In this case it's a medical practice software that was in use for about 10 years and although the clinic has moved to a different EMR software their older patients information is still active on this older system. It isn't worth the $65K to move this data. So we have to work with the environment at hand.

 

Building a system for Virtualbox is a possibility but again, it's an added expense. We'll look at that as a potential option if the version without XenTools does not work.

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I've never tried to install OracleBox inside a Windows VM on Citrix Hypervisor, but its a thought. 

Nested Hypervisors get weird quick. I had to go the virtualbox route twice myself on two old 

legacy systems that was required to keep indefinitely. One is actually NT 4.0 so I feel your pain.

 

 

--Alan--

 

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5 hours ago, Bill Artemik said:

We will try to remove the XenTools and export it and import it to see if it will run. We understand that 2003 is long past its functional life but that doesn't stop some companies from using the product. In this case it's a medical practice software that was in use for about 10 years and although the clinic has moved to a different EMR software their older patients information is still active on this older system. It isn't worth the $65K to move this data. So we have to work with the environment at hand.

 

Building a system for Virtualbox is a possibility but again, it's an added expense. We'll look at that as a potential option if the version without XenTools does not work.

I am not questioning the need or desire to run a non-supported product per se. I am just stating that it may not work and evidently seems to not work under a newer XenServer release.

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At some point, people also have to realize that staying stuck with old --  and now likely insecure versions of operating systems -- is not a good long-term strategy.  Sure, thre are always some exceptions as to why legacy systems nee to be maintained past their support dates, but this is just delaying the inevitable. The harsh reality of the situation will have to sink in sooner or later, and hopefully before something bad happens.

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I agree, Tobias. But our job is to make recommendations and do what we can to make things work. I still have one client that uses a DOS 6.22 machine because their $500,000 CNC (milling) machine operates off software that runs on the DOS computer. There is no retro-fit for this machine. And to upgrade will cost them $750,000! So we do what we can to keep this thing working (including swapping out older system boards and converting the hard drive subsystem to SSD (NOT an easy task, BTW!). It cost them about $3,300 in parts and labor (including research and testing) but it saved them a TON of money. So there are times we just have to live with the cards we are dealt.

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As long as you have backups there is nothing wrong with running insecure/outdated Operating Systems as long as their Internet access is blocked.

I wished I didn't have NT 4.0, but the system was built by an individual and all of the software was circa 2005. The data is still being accessed

and reviewed so its a keeper as long as I can keep it accessible. Not ideal by any means. Thank goodness they didn't use OS2 Warp ! 

 

--Alan--

 

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