Sunday, April 17, 2011
I recently needed to boot a cloned image of an old NT4 system under a virtual machine. Of course, nothing is easy sometimes. In this case I was using VirtualBox as between it and Qemu(KVM) it seemed to have the best support for NT4. However it didn't emulate the Adaptec SCSI hardware that the original system used and boot attempts were met by the famous BSOD with inaccessible_boot_device. Loading up a new VM with NT4 and booting with /sos (selecting VGA mode is one way) to see what drivers were being loaded the difference was that the new install loaded ATAPI.SYS and the cloned image was loading AIC78xx.SYS, which gave me an idea. I booted the cloned image from a SystemRescueCD mounted the "C:" drive with ntfs-3g and copied the ATAPI.SYS driver over the AIC78xx.SYS driver as AIC78xx.SYS and voila, the system now boots! Not claiming this will work in every case but it did work in this one.