Install Windows Virtual PC Part III

Once you install Windows Virtual PC, you can install Windows XP Mode (if you are using Windows XP as the guest operating system) or you can create a new virtual machine. In part II, we looked at installing Windows XP Mode. Now, we’ll look at how to create a new virtual machine.

To create a new virtual machine and install a guest operating system from an ISO image:

  1. From the Start menu, click Windows Virtual PC. Alternatively, from the Start menu, click All Programs, click the Windows Virtual PC folder, and then click Windows Virtual PC. This opens the Virtual Machines folder which provides details about all the virtual machines created and provides tools for creating and configuring your virtual machines.
  2. From within the Virtual Machines folder, click Create virtual machine button. The create a Virtual Machine wizard launches.
  3. Type in a new for the new virtual machine and select a location for the .vmcx and .vhd files to be saved. Click Next.
  4. Enter in the amount of RAM you want to be used by the virtual machine.
  5. To allow the virtual machine access to the network or Internet access, click the Use computer on network connection. Click Next.
  6. Accept the default to create a dynamically expanding virtual machine and click Create.
  7. The new virtual machine will appear within the Virtual Machines folder. Right click the new virtual machine and click Settings.
  8. In the left pane, select DVD Drive and then select Open an ISO image.
  9. Click Browse to locate and select the .ISO file. Click OK.
  10. Right click the virtual machine and click Open. Install the operating system in the virtual machine.
  11. Next, install the integration components. Within the Virtual Machine window, click Install Integration Components from the Tools menu. A wizard walks you through the installation of the package.
  12. From the Action menu, within the virtual machine window, click Restart.

You now have a newly created virtual machine.

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Install Windows Virtual PC Part II

If you plan to use Windows XP as the guest operating system, you should download and install Windows XP Mode. The package is available as a free download from the Windows Virtual PC product page.

To install Windows XP Mode:

  1. Click Start, type virtual and click Virtual Windows XP.
  2. Click Download to obtain the setup file.
  3. Once the download completes, double click VirtualWindowsXP.msi to begin the installation.
  4. Click Run.
  5. Click Next.
  6. Click Next to accept the default installation directory.
  7. Click Yes to continue the installation.
  8. Click Finish.

Once the installation is complete, you can launch Windows XP Mode from the Start menu. The first time you do so, the Virtual Windows XP Setup will launch to complete configuration, as described below:

  • When prompted to accept the license agreement, click I accept the license terms and click Next.
  • Setup will prompt you to specify a password that the default user account will use. Type in a password.
  • Select Remember Credentials (Recommended) to configure Windows Virtual PC to remember the password so you do not have to supply the credentials each time you use it. Click Next.
  • Setup will prompt you to enable automatic updates for the Virtual Windows XP machine. Click Next. At this point, set up and complete and Virtual Windows XP is launched.

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Install Windows Virtual PC Part I

Windows Virtual PC is available as a free download. You can download the update package from the product Web page. Once you have downloaded the package, you can proceed with the installation steps.

To install Windows Virtual PC:

  1. Locate and double-click the file, Windows6.1-KB958559-plaftform.msu, where platform is either x86 or x64.
  2. Click Yes to proceed with the installation.
  3. Click I Accept to agree to the licensing terms.
  4. Click Restart Now. This will complete the installation of Windows Virtual PC for Windows 7.

After the installation is finished, Windows Virtual PC is available from the Start menu. You can also type “virtual” in the search field on the Start menu. A link to Windows Virtual PC will appear.

At this point, you have one of two options. If you plan to use Windows XP as a guest operating system, you should install Windows XP Mode. Alternatively, if you are not using Windows XP as the guest operating system, you can create your own virtual machine. In part II, we’ll look at the first option, installing Windows XP Mode.

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Requirements For Windows Virtual PC

Windows Virtual PC is Microsoft latest virtualization software that is designed specifically for Windows 7 so Windows XP Mode applications can be seen and accessed from Windows 7.

If you are not familiar with Windows XP Mode, it is a new benefit of Windows 7 Professional and Windows 7 Ultimate, which provides additional application compatibility. It is basically a must for anyone facing application compatibility problems because it allows you to install and run many of your productivity applications for Windows XP directly from your Windows 7-based PC. It uses virtualization technology, such as Windows Virtual PC, to provide a virtual Windows XP environment for Windows 7. However, to use this feature, your CPU must support hardware virtualization

Note: Windows XP Mode is only available on the following editions of Windows 7: Windows 7 Enterprise, Windows 7 Professional, and Windows 7 Ultimate.

Hardware Requirements

To run Windows Virtual PC, your computer must meet a set of minimum requirements:

  • Hardware Virtualization Technology enabled
  • 1 GHz 32-bit / 64-bit processor required
  • 2GB memory or higher recommended
  • Recommended 15 GB hard disk space per virtual Windows environment

Host Operating Systems

Windows Virtual PC supports the following host operating systems:

  • Windows 7 Home Basic
  • Windows 7 Home Premium
  • Windows 7 Enterprise
  • Windows 7 Professional
  • Windows 7 Ultimate

Guest Operating Systems

Windows Virtual PC supports the following guest operating systems:

  • Windows 7 (Windows 7 Enterprise and Windows 7 Ultimate support virtual applications)
  • Windows Vista (Windows Vista Enterprise and Ultimate editions support virtual applications)
  • Windows XP (Windows XP SP3 supports virtual applications)

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What’s New In Windows Virtual PC

Virtualization software lets you run multiple operating systems on a single computer at the same time. Instead of using a dedicated computer for every operating system, you can run them all from your Windows desktop. This provides a cost efficient way of testing and supporting application compatibility.

Windows Virtual PC is Microsoft’s latest virtualization software and includes new capabilities and enhancements over its predecessor Virtual PC 2007. Here are just a few of the new things that you can look forward to seeing in the Windows Virtual PC.

  • Integration with Windows XP Mode — Lets you run Windows XP productivity applications in Windows XP Mode.
  • USB Support — Provides support for various USB devices such as printers, scanners, digital cameras, etc.
  • Clipboard Sharing — Lets you cut and paste between the Windows 7 host and the virtual machine.
  • Drive Sharing — Provides more flexible sharing options, including the ability to share any mass storage device.
  • Known Folder Sharing — Lets you access Windows 7 Known Folders, such as My Documents and Pictures, from within the virtual machine.
  • Printer Redirection — Lets you redirect printing from the virtual machine to printers attached to the Windows 7 host.