By Jessie / Last update October 28, 2022

What Is VHD?

VHD stands for Virtual Hard Disk. It is an image format specification that is commonly used as a hard disk for virtual machines and is built into modern versions of Windows. You can save things from a physical disk, such as disk partitions, system, files and folders on a virtual disk.

So it works as a physical disk when the virtual machine is running. If you shut down it, you cannot access the VHD or saved files on it. 

Vhd

Why Copy VHD to Physical Disk?

This article summarizes the three most common reasons for you to clone VHD to physical disk.

  • You have a VHD, and you want to migrate everything on the virtual disk to a physical drive.
  • Deployment of your configurations is not suited in a virtual environment.
  • You are out of support from your vendor because of their ignorance of Hyper-V.

The Best Way to Clone VHD to Physical Disk 

To copy a VHD to a physical disk, the best way is to mount the virtual disk and then clone it directly. This way can convert everything from the virtual disk to the physical disk without losing data. After cloning, you can boot your computer directly from the cloned disk and then use the system, installed software and access all the data of VHD on the physical disk.

You can choose a professional disk cloning software to help you, such as AOMEI Backupper Professional, which has powerful cloning features and is easy to use.

Disk clone: It allows you to clone disk to another one and ensure it's bootable after cloning. 
Intelligent clone: It is the default cloning method for disk clone, which clones only used space while skipping bad sectors and empty ones. Thus, you can clone VHD disk to physical disk successfully, even if it is smaller SSD or has bad sectors.
Live clone: It allows the cloning task to work in the background, therefore you can use your computer normally during the cloning process.
SSD alignment: If you want to copy VHD to an SSD, this feature can accelerate the reading and writing speed of SSD.
Different systems: It supports Windows 11/10/8/7/XP/Vista, etc. For server users, try AOMEI Backupper Server!

Copy VHD to Physical Disk in Windows 10 Step by Step

Next, you can follow the graphic tutorial below to start the VHD to physical disk converting process.

Step 1. Attach VHD in Disk Management for Conversion 

First and foremost, you need to migrate the virtual disk to the local disk so that it will become visible as a usual disk in the system. Here are the steps.

1. Right-click This PC > Manage > Disk Management.

2. Click the Action tab in Disk Management and choose Attach VHD. Then follow the instructions to complete the remaining steps. The VHD will be visible in console blue-colored.

Attach Vhd

Step 2. Perform VHD to Physical Disk Clone

After you attach it, you can follow the steps below to convert VHD to physical disk with AOMEI Backupper Professional, By the way, it's recommended that you select an empty local physical disk as your target disk. Since this software will delete all the partitions on the disk. So if you don't want to lose data, it's important to backup your files in advance.

1. Download and install the disk clone software to convert VHD to physical disk. We recommend you use AOMEI Backupper Professional, it's safe and easy to use. Open it after installing, then click Clone > Disk Clone.

Download Demo Win 11/10/8.1/8/7/XP
Secure Download

Choose Disk Clone

2. Select the VHD as the source disk. And then, click Next. 

Choose Source Disk 2

3. Choose a physical disk as the destination disk. And then, click Next. 

Choose Destination Unallocated HDD

4. Click SSD Alignment to increase the reading and writing speed of the target disk if it is an SSD. AThen click Start Clone to clone VHD to physical disk in Windows 10. 

Disk Clone Preview Align SSD Checked

Notes:

  • By default, if you don't check Sector By Sector Clone feature, this software will clone only used sectors in the VHD disk. This is very useful to clone larger drive to smaller drive or SSD with secure boot. 
  • If the physical disk is larger, you need to clone and resize hard drive with the Edit Partitions feature. Otherwise, you will find the cloned SSD not showing full capacity. Besides, it still helps you convert the disk type of physical disk if it is different from VHD. 

Edit Partitions

Step 3. Restore VHD to Physical Disk

After cloning, you can detach the VHD if you want to recover the VHD space to a physical disk.

1. Right-click This PC > Manage > Disk Management. Then right-click the VHD disk and select Detach VHD.

Detach Vhd 2

2. Open File Explorer and find your local VHD file, then right-click to delete it.

Summary

To copy a VHD to physical disk, the best way is to attach this disk as a usual disk and then use the professional cloning software AOMEI Backupper Professional to clone the disk directly. This way not only is able to clone everything from the virtual disk to the physical disk and use it properly, but also you won't lose any data.

After cloning, you can boot your computer successfully from the cloned disk. If you want to recover the space from the virtual disk to the physical disk you can detach the VHD.

In addition, this software is also good at backup and restore. Therefore, to convert VHD to physical disk, you can also create a disk image of the virtual disk and then restore VHD to physical disk. If you want to protect unlimited PCs and Servers within your company, you can pick the AOMEI Backupper Technician Plus. Download this software now to explore more useful features.