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Transfer an existing virtual machine to your new Mac or an external drive

  • Parallels Desktop 10 for Mac
  • Parallels Desktop 9 for Mac
  • Parallels Desktop 8 for Mac
  • Parallels Desktop 7 for Mac


You need to transfer an existing virtual machine to your new Mac.


When you buy a new Mac, you do not have to install your virtual machine once again - you can just transfer an existing one.

Important: Stop or suspend your virtual machine before applying the steps below

  1. Locate the virtual machine on your old Mac hard drive.

    Note: in order to transfer Boot Camp partition please refer to KB 113658

    By default Virtual Machine files are saved to either Documents/Parallels folder inside your user folder, or to /Users/Shared/Parallels.

    Parallels Desktop Virtual Machines have .pvm extension

  2. Copy .pvm file to an external Hard Drive or transfer via the Network.
  3. Connect your external Hard Drive to the destination Mac.
  4. Copy .pvm file from the external Hard Drive to any folder on the destination Mac.

    Note: the default folder for Parallels Desktop virtual machines is either Documents/Parallels folder inside your user folder, or /Users/Shared/Parallels

  5. Double-click on your .pvm file to start your Virtual Machine

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