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in DevOps and Agile by (29.3k points)

I'd like to copy the disk image of a running EC2 instance (grab the AMI) and import it into a virtual box or eventually have it run using Vagrant. I saw that the packer ( allows you to create AMI's and corresponding Vagrant boxes to work together, however, the running instance I currently have has been running for over two years and would be difficult to replicate.

I imagine that this issue is common in the devops community however have not found a solution in my research online. Are there any tools out there that let you accomplish this task?

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To convert ec2 AMI to VMDK for vagrant

Follow these steps and you will able to convert ec2

 So basically you need to enable root SSH access

For example:

$ sudo perl -i -pe 's/#PermitRootLogin .*/PermitRootLogin without-password/' /etc/ssh/sshd_config

$ sudo perl -i -pe 's/.*(ssh-rsa .*)/\1/' /root/.ssh/authorized_keys

$ sudo /etc/init.d/sshd reload # optional command<br>

After this copy the running system to a local disk image:

$ ssh -i ~/.ec2/your_key [email protected] 'dd if=/dev/xvda1 bs=1M | gzip' | gunzip | dd of=./ec2-image.raw

Prepare a filesystem on a new image file

$ dd if=/dev/zero of=vmdk-image.raw bs=1M count=10240 # create a 10gb image file

$ losetup -fv vmdk-image.raw # mount as loopback device

$ cfdisk /dev/loop0 # create a bootable partition, write, and quit

$ losetup -fv -o 32256 vmdk-image.raw # mount the partition with an offset

$ fdisk -l -u /dev/loop0 # get the size of the partition

$ mkfs.ext4 -b 4096 /dev/loop1 $(((20971519 - 63)*512/4096)) # format using the END number

Now you need to copy everything from the EC2 image to the empty image:

$ losetup -fv ec2-image.raw

$ mkdir -p /mnt/loop/1 /mnt/loop/2 # create mount points

$ mount -t ext4 /dev/loop1 /mnt/loop/1 # mount vmdk-image

$ mount -t ext4 /dev/loop2 /mnt/loop/2 # mount ami-image

$ cp -a /mnt/loop/2/* /mnt/loop/1/

and install Grub:

$ cp /usr/lib/grub/x86_64-pc/stage* /mnt/loop/1/boot/grub/

and unmount the device (umount /dev/loop1) and convert the raw disk image to a vmdk image:

$ qemu-img convert -f raw -O vmdk vmdk-image.raw final.vmdk

Now just create a VirtualBox VM with the vmdk image mounted as the primary boot device. Then it boots inside QEMU and copies the path /dev/xvda then it will boot in QEMU without any problem.

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