This is the second of a 2-part story. See the first part here.
Our client was running an old Windows 2008 server on an ESXi host, which hosted their critical business software (CRM and timekeeping software).
The original plan was to migrate to SaaS / cloud-based solutions; however, the offerings did not offer all the functionality. Even if they started using the SaaS for new clients, they would still need to access existing records. All in all, they weren’t ready to move to SaaS, and still needed their old software.
The server itself was aging, with hard drives showing pre-fail indicators and some bad blocks. We had tried previously to clone the drives, which had failed due to the bad blocks (both Clonezilla and cp functions would fail). VMWare offers some tools such as vmkfstools which helped.
Long story short – I setup a spare laptop as a NFS server, was able to correctly clone their drives, and setup Virtualbox on the main office computer with the VMDK mounted as the disk. All their RDP shortcuts still worked, and now they had an extra copy of it on an external harddrive for additional backup.