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Multiboot Mac OS X from .vhd/.vmdk/.vdi/.img?


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#1
iWin32

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I am wondering if there are any developers out there interested in getting a hackintosh to boot from a virtual image file, like a .vhd file. Native VHD Boot was discussed a while back as the official Windows 7 feature. As other users have posted, it hangs at an error of 0x02 when attempting to boot Mac OS X. The main problem with this method is that Mac OS X or any non-Windows OS installation is not supported by this feature. Furthermore, only the booting of Windows 7 Ultimate (and maybe Windows 8 CP as mentioned online) is supported by this feature. Interestingly, a non-Microsoft product called vBoot (released by VMLite) claims to be able to boot all Windows and some Linux operating systems from a .vhd. Here is what a moderator of their forum said when someone asked if vBoot would allow Mac OS X booting from a VHD file:

This is a long term goal, won't be available in any time soon.

We have verified that OS X would work with VBoot, but it's not a top priority right now.


The thing is, though, that was one year ago, and their free trial of vBoot (that's right, it's not free) expired in January of this year, and hasn't been updated since. So basically, it won't work until you buy a license, and the sdk's price for us users to develop our own drivers for it is rediculous ($5000!?!)

They do, however, have released a modified version of Grub that apparently enables support of .vhd files, but I haven't looked at a code, because I'm not a programmer.

VirtualBox contains support for .vhd, .vmdk, and their own .vdi files. .img files are supported by a modified version of Grub, like Burg (whose map commands does NOT require the images to be in one, contigiuous area, unlike Grub4dos who does). Who knows? Maybe we could add DMG2IMG to add support for even native .dmg boot!

But, it's not that simple as merging code, I'm afraid. We need to create our own drivers for Mac OS X (probably .kext files) to enable it to support the .vhd/.img as a boot device. Both the official Windows 7 feature and VMLite's VBoot have their own drivers to enable the OS to boot. So, I was wondering if other developers would be willing to develop the following things:
1. A modified version of Grub or Burg that enables you to boot Mac OS X (perhaps chainload Chameleon from the .vhd)
2. Drivers that enable Mac OS X to boot from the .vhd.

After that, we could try to do the same thing as before, install Mac OS X from VMware onto the .vhd (native disk .vmdk pointing to the .vhd file), install the modified bootloader, and set it up. After that, we could reboot into it!

Anyone interested? Thanks in advanced!

#2
Donk

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Well it is possible to boot from an Apple DMG file. Used to install Lion and Netinstall images. Maybe simpler to work on that which is built into the kernel rather than add new image format support. Interesting idea though and or me VHD would be great. Use boot from VHD all the time at work. Would love Linux and Mac OS X support.





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