Windows

Move your Windows XP installation into Windows 7 with VMware

Greg Shultz shows you how to use free VMware tools to move your entire Windows XP installation into Windows 7.

If you are still using Microsoft Windows XP but thinking of moving to Windows 7, you're probably feeling a bit apprehensive about the project. What if I told you that you could have Windows XP and Windows 7 running on the same system? Of course, you might say that's what Windows XP Mode is all about, and you'd be right.

But what if I told you that you could have your Windows XP installation and Windows 7 running on the same system? To that you might say that's what dual booting is all about, and you'd be right again.

But what if I told you that you could use VMware Converter to turn your entire Windows XP installation (data files, applications as well as the operating system) into a virtual machine that you could then run inside Windows 7 with VMware Player without having to worry about configuring a dual-boot partition scheme and without having to reinstall all your applications in Windows XP Mode? Well, it's true, and the best part is that it won't cost you a penny!

In this edition of the Windows Desktop Report, I'll show you how to use these free VMware tools to move your Windows XP installation into Windows 7.

(Note: While I have chosen to highlight this technique using Windows XP, it will work equally well with Windows Vista.)

This blog post is also available in PDF format in a free TechRepublic download.

Caveats

Before you can begin this procedure, there are a few caveats that you need to be aware of, so read carefully.

When you download the VMware Converter or the VMware Player, you'll need to fill out a registration form and agree to a EULA, which includes the following sections pertaining to operating systems:

  • 1.3 "Guest Operating Systems" means instances of third-party operating systems licensed by you and installed in a Virtual Machine and run using the Software.
  • 3.6 Licenses required for third-party software. The Software enables you to run multiple instances of third-party guest operating systems and application programs. You are responsible for obtaining and complying with any licenses necessary to operate any such third-party software, including Guest Operating Systems and/or application programs.

In other words, it's up to you to determine whether you have proper licensing to simultaneously run copies of Windows XP or Vista and Windows 7. Of course, you will get varying explanations depending on who you talk to. And, as you can imagine, there's much debate and confusion.

Another thing to keep in mind is if the hardware of your Windows 7 system is dramatically different (i.e. more modern) from the hardware on your Windows XP system, you may have to reactivate Windows XP. This could lead you down a tricky path and might be more trouble than it is worth. It's up to you to decide how many hoops you are willing to go through to get this to work.

One more thing, make sure that you have a full backup or a disk image of your Windows XP system before you start. That way if something goes wrong, you will be safe.

Getting the VMware tools

You can go to VMware's Download Center page and download the latest version (4.0.1) of the VMware vCenter Converter Standalone. You can then download the latest version (3.1) of the VMware Player.

Each file is a little over 100MB so, depending on your broadband connection, the download might take a a while.

My example configuration

In my example, I'll be using two different computers: one computer running Windows XP and one computer running Windows 7. I'll install the VMware Converter on the Windows XP system and use it to create the virtual machine on an external drive. I'll install the VMware Player on the Windows 7 system and run the virtual machine there.

Converting your system

Once you have downloaded the VMware Converter, just copy the executable file to your Windows XP system. Just to be on the safe side, make sure that your system is currently up to date with Windows Update. Then, I recommend that you close all applications and restart the system before you install the VMware Converter. That way, you'll be sure to have a fresh environment that's free from any potential problems.

After your system restarts, double-click the executable file to launch the VMware Converter installation procedure. When the installation is complete, you can immediately launch the VMware Converter. Once the program loads, locate and select the Convert Machine button to launch the Conversion wizard.

Now, you're ready to get down to business. The Conversion wizard is a four-step procedure during which you'll choose from a set of configuration options. Let's take a closer look.

Once the Conversion wizard begins, you'll be prompted to specify the source for the virtual machine. From the Select Source Type drop-down menu, choose Powered-on Machine. Then, select the This Local Machine radio button, as shown in Figure A. To continue, click the Next button.

Figure A

In Step 1, you'll specify the source.
In Step 2, you'll specify the destination for the virtual machine, as shown in Figure B. From the Select Destination Type drop-down menu, choose VMware Workstation or Other VMware Virtual Machine. From the Select VMware Product drop-down menu, choose VMware Workstation 6.5.x. Then, in the Name text box, provide a name for your virtual machine. Finally, click the Browse button adjacent to the Choose a Location for the Virtual Machine text box and specify a folder or drive, such as a external device or a network, on which to save the virtual machine file.

Figure B

In Step 2, you'll specify the destination.

In Step 3, there are two key sections in which you'll need to pay special attention. You can just leave the default settings for the rest. In the Devices section, you'll specify the amount of RAM to set aside for your virtual machine.

Since you're working with the local machine, the VMware Converter will choose a RAM setting based on your system's amount of RAM. However, because you'll actually be using the virtual machine on your Windows 7 system, you'll probably want to exceed the default maximum setting. As such, you can ignore the warning messages shown in Figure C.

Figure C

In Step 3, you'll configure the amount of RAM to dedicate to your virtual machine.

You'll want to specify at least the same amount of RAM that is in the physical machine, but you can specify more depending on how much RAM is in your Windows 7 system. For example, if your Windows 7 system has 4GB of RAM, you can specify 1024MB of RAM for your virtual machine.

In the Networks section, you'll want to choose NAT from the Connection Type drop-down menu, as shown in Figure D, to specify that the virtual machine will share the host system's IP address.

Figure D

In Step 3, you'll also specify the type of network connection.
In step 4 of the Conversion wizard, you'll see all the settings that you specified as a confirmation, as shown in Figure E. To begin the actual conversion, just click the Finish button.

Figure E

Step 4 of the Conversion wizard allows you to confirm all your choices.
As soon as you click Finish, the conversion procedure will begin. While you can monitor the process by watching the Status column and the Log Highlights, it does take some time to complete. For instance, my XP system with about 40GB on an 80GB drive took just a little over an hour to complete, as shown in Figure F.

Figure F

From clicking the Convert Machine button to receiving the Completed Status screen took 1 hour and 9 minutes on my test system.

Using the VMware Player

To install the VMware Player, just copy the executable file to your Windows 7 system and run it. After you deal with the UAC, the installation procedure, which uses a straightforward wizard interface, is a relatively quick six-step operation. When it is complete, you will have to restart your system.

As soon as your Windows 7 restarts, you can copy the virtual machine to a folder of your choice. Since I created the virtual machine on an external drive, I just connected the drive to my Windows 7 system and copied the Saturn VM folder, which contained two files, to the Documents Library. In my case, the two files were the virtual machine file Saturn VM.vmdk and virtual disk file Saturn VM.vmx, and they weighed in at about 37.2GB.

Once the copy operation is complete, you can launch the VMware Player. When you see the Welcome to VMware Player screen, as shown in Figure G, select the Open a Virtual Machine command.

Figure G

From the Welcome to VMware Player screen, select the Open a Virtual Machine command.
Then locate and select your virtual machine and select the Open button. As soon as you do so, you'll see your virtual machine in a powered-off state, as shown in Figure H. To get started, just click the Play Virtual Machine icon.

Figure H

To get started, just click the Play Virtual Machine icon.

The first time you launch VMware Player, you may encounter warning messages about drives that were part of your old physical system that are not part of your new system. You can just bypass messages for the time being. You can later disable the missing drives.

You'll also be prompted to download and install VMware Tools. These tools will provide you with all sorts of features that will make running your Windows XP installation as a virtual machine much more convenient. So go ahead and download and install them.

For example, the VMware Tools provides better graphics performance, support for shared folders, drag-and-drop operations, automatic grabbing and releasing of the mouse cursor, copying and pasting between guest and host, and more.

To learn more about the VMware Player, download the Getting Started Guide PDF.

When you're done, you'll have Windows XP running in VMware Player inside Windows 7, as shown in Figure I.

Figure I

Windows XP running in VMware Player inside Windows 7.

What's your take?

Will you use this technique to virtualize your Windows XP system? Have you used VMware Converter or VMware Player before? As always, if you have comments or information to share about this topic, please take a moment to drop by the TechRepublic Community Forums and let us hear from you.

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About

Greg Shultz is a freelance Technical Writer. Previously, he has worked as Documentation Specialist in the software industry, a Technical Support Specialist in educational industry, and a Technical Journalist in the computer publishing industry.

50 comments
azieser
azieser

I have been running a Virtual Box version of Windows XP on my Windows 7 Pro installation since it came out. It was an excellent way to continue to use our older software that was not updated for 7. The surprise came after we switched over to Windows 7 and I discovered that some of the newer software would not run on it either. Software such as Adobe Illustrator CS3 will not be updated for Windows 7 and Adobe thinks we should all pay hundreds of dollars to have this program run on Windows 7. Not a very customer friendly relations program from Adobe, but most other companies offer little more in the way of service these days. Anyway this approach has saved my company a lot of money on software upgrades that we did not have to make. Now eventually we will have to upgrade as Microsoft will stop releasing security updates to XP at some point and it will become too un-secure to use.

don_neal
don_neal

Can I use the VMWare Player in an installation of Windows 7 which is already a virtual machine running under Microsoft Virtual Server?

TuneUp Utilities
TuneUp Utilities

Thanks for pointing out that Windows XP (and vista) can run with Windows 7 on the same system without dual-booting?an important tip! Do you know if this process is the same for moving your Windows XP installation into Windows Embedded 7 Standard? WES 7 is a modularized version of Windows 7 so I?m wondering if the transfer process would be the same.

jma73
jma73

Hi, I tried this converter with success before, but on my work computer, which has this cpu: Intel Xeon CPU 5140 @2.33GHz (it has 4 cores) I cannot start the image after the convert. It fails during startup. I suspect that it is because of the cpu. Anyone who has experienced this? Or succesfully converted a similar?

amuscan
amuscan

This is a very good idea, but this is not moving XP ... this is KEEPING XP (in a vm) so ... same XP, same security problem an it will run slower since is a guest on Windows 7 host. Still the idea is good. Adrian.

TitusHooker
TitusHooker

Your example is with two different machines. I am running XP MCE on hardware ready for Win7, used Partition Manager via XP to create a new partition and installed Win7 now using the boot manager all on one machine. How do I use your technique to move the original XP install under the Win7 using VMWare? Thanx.

ghouart
ghouart

seems really more easy than xp mode !!! thanks to vmware for the free tools and of course to you for the very good ans simple tutorial

ramnet
ramnet

I really cannot see the point in these type of tools. Running multiple operating systems on one PC may have been desirable back when PC's cost $5,000 plus but the whole concept of VM ware and XP Mode is lost on me. Its kind of like saying would you like a mole on your face - well thanks for the offer but no thanks. It really aggravates me that Microsoft think they can bump clients around like this with bolt on extras. W7 should have had 3 things in it - the classic start menu , a direct upgrade to XP and a decent restore/repair option like the 3rd choice on the XP DVD. Give me those things and XP would be gone quite quickly. Without them I am stuck and will not move forward as those things really matter to me. Ken

bert
bert

Is it possible to do the opposite, e.g. run Windows 7 virtually on a system running Windows Vista 32? That would be great for trying out Windows 7. Do I have to respect 32 and 64 bit versions of both operating systems or can I run virtually a 64 bit OS on a "real" 32 bit OS? Thanks.

deICERAY
deICERAY

I pre-ordered LOSE7 and eagerly tried to use the "easy" MS utility to port XP into 7 - an exercise in BSODs. So I installed 7 and did the vitual XP window - that doesn't support ANYTHING - and after wrestling with LOSE7 for months, I am now happily back running my XP home SP3 in 32 bit mode on a screaming Phenom II 64 bit SLI quad core system. No, thank you very much, I will NOT be using XP 64 bit as there are no drivers. Nope, at least I know how to wrestle this old bad boy to the ground and get what I want out of it. LOSE7 is a P.O.S., they dumped most all of the good stuff in XP and substituted crap and left out essentials and hid everything else. Bottom line: STICK WITH XP. You won't be sorry.

robertbrown
robertbrown

If you can do so, when you're moving an XP installation off the disk it was originally installed on (either cloned to a different drive or backed up for restoration elsewhere) consider first preparing the XP original with Microsoft's sysprep utility, remove the hard drive and attach it to the Win7 machine, on which you will install both VMware Converter and VMware Player. Convert the XP drive, saving to either the Win7 hard drive or to an external drive (which has obvious archival advantages), remove the XP drive, then follow the balance of the instruction given here.

Shane Grant
Shane Grant

I had an old Laptop that the LCD burnt out and decided to virtualize the XP installation on to my new laptop. I created an image of the old drive and created an empty vmware virtual disk the same size as my old hard drive with windows free vmware server. I booted the empty virtual machine and used disk imaging software to write the drive image to the empty vmware virtual disk. Before attempting to boot the imaged virtual machine i ran vmware converter on the virtual disk and selected the option to import from another version of vmware. This converted the virtual disk contents (which were identical to my previous physical hard drive) into real virtual machine compatible drive. Booted - activated - and voila. I was able to do all this while safely knowing that the hard disk contents were still on the original hard drive, that i had a drive image backed up as a secondary precaution and if all else failed I could continue my attempts without fear of losing the precious installation from the old laptop.

finkey
finkey

Some oldies but goodies don't run on Windows 7. So to be able to use Windows XP within Windows 7 is very useful. Thank you.

playon
playon

There is a far better way of running the xp operating system on a windows 7 computer than using a third party application that installs and runs the xp op system within the windows 7 operating system which is really just running the xp op system as another application within the windows 7 op system environment. It is not necessary to undermine the efficiency of the xp op system by running it as another application within the windows 7 op system BECAUSE windows 7 computers are apparently designed to allow for the direct installion of a regular xp installation cd disk.Windows 7 computers have an option called " shrinking" which is in disc management and it allows the user to create a separate PARTITION out of the existing volume that the windows 7 is running on.Then,all you do is boot up using the xp installation disk and then install the xp onto the newly created partition and then you have a windows 7 computer that automatically bootups into the xp op system whenever you turn on the computer because the xp bootloader overwrites the windows 7 operating system. For more information -- see www.howtogeek.com who published the article on Jan 7/2010

QAonCall
QAonCall

Since Windows Seven has virtualization native to it, and most organizations current maintain an image, and with the ability to launch from images with Win7, I would think adding VMware would be 'extra' I run windows 7 and have multiple VM's of different images of Xp in on my local drive. Windows 7 allows you to create a VM image that can be the 'boot' and with that accomplishing the corporate standard, you could then have that boot image contain the WinXP image in it and just run it that way without any VMWare software. Unless I have missed something he was trying to put forward, I think the article only offers a non-MS way to accomplish this?

Stuff_For_Reflection
Stuff_For_Reflection

Most of the time the converter might help out with most software. Just keep in mind that software bound to hardware (like the CPU version) will not work after the conversion. The same goes for MAC-bound software (yes, you can change the MAC-address of your virtual PC (unlike the CPU) but that's an added job you need to do.) Bottom line make sure all software of your Windows XP installation is hardware unbound. Note: VMtools comes with VMplayer 3.1 (but older versions lack this).

Mark W. Kaelin
Mark W. Kaelin

Are you currently using virtualization to run Windows XP in Windows 7? Does Greg's system seem feasible for you to try?

QAonCall
QAonCall

I am currently taking the hyper v courses for MS virtualization, and have not studied all the VMWare stuff. That being said, I have not seen anything about using a VM of the WES stuff. I am not sure you typically would, since there is a WES emulator, and you would not need a VM instance (or it would be a resource drain) considering the footprint of the WES emulator? What would you be attempting to run the WES VM for on the desktop? Will the emulator work for you instead?

Stuff_For_Reflection
Stuff_For_Reflection

Can you tell em what it is you see during the failure? The info you write here is little to work with.. If you really want good advice/answers I would recommend posting the issue you have on the forums of VMware itself. I have seen some capable people there.

Greg Shultz
Greg Shultz

...and I believe that you would be able to follow pretty much the same steps to move XP from on partition to the other. You then use the instructions in the article Capture unallocated disk space from an XP to Windows 7 dual-boot migration http://blogs.techrepublic.com.com/window-on-windows/?p=1767&tag=leftCol;post-1751 to recover the disk space allocated to XP. However, I encourage you to read the whole series of article (3 total) and that you plan your approach carefully as well as make a backup or disk image before you begin.

goffd
goffd

So if the aim of this is to run your original XP build with all programs and patches as a VM in W7 - then what is the strategy for adding or removing programs from XP and applying MS patches to XP? Seems to me you'd have to do that under the original XP and then remake the VM each time. Bit of a pain in the b*m given how many MS patches one tends to get... I run 2 hard disks, hardware is cheap, XP on one and W7 on the other. And use EasyBCD as a boot manager. NeoSmart also has iReBoot which lets you switch between O/S's withiout a reboot (I haven't tried that yet though).

bert
bert

Is it possible to do the opposite, e.g. run Windows 7 virtually on a system running Windows Vista 32? That would be great for trying out Windows 7. Do I have to respect 32 and 64 bit versions of both operating systems or can I run virtually a 64 bit OS on a "real" 32 bit OS? Thanks.

Gis Bun
Gis Bun

Funny. You must be the onlyone I know with these problems. Using Win 7 on a system I built with a Core i7 and NEVER had a BSOD. Never had any issues actually that I couldn't correct. I guess then it's a PEBKAC issue....

QAonCall
QAonCall

Win7 has the ability to assign to a single or multiple applications the designation of 'XP mode'. So 'technically' moving them would not be necessary. They can be installed and designed to run in XP mode. This eliminates some of the issues described. It works pretty good from all the stuff I have checked. As for combining the hard drives this can be accomplished as noted. The issue would be that if you run the VM just for the 'older' apps, this requires additional storage, memory and hard drive space. on top of that, you still have 2 big issues (if those were not enough). Maintenance of a standing XP system, and of course the looming retirement. Win7 is more secure, especially in 64 bit edition, and the performance gains are completely worth it for the other non-XP reliant applications. sorry for the delay in response, I was out of town. Good luck

icedcoke15
icedcoke15

My XP setup is that my system resides on one partition including the necessary programs and another partition which have my other programs but i one disk. is it possible to image the whole disk with drives C: & D:? what shall i do so i can run my other programs.

eric2820
eric2820

I think you may have missed the point, it's not XP that is important but the data that XP has that is important. Thus moving the Windows XP with a product like VMware moves the data as well as Windows XP while just installing Windows XP from the installation CD will not bring your data acrosss to the new Windows 7 system. And those of us who need to do an in-place upgrade from XP to 7 will need a third party tool to do the move because Microsoft isn't directly supporting upgrading from XP to 7!

ktimm
ktimm

I've been running Virtual PC for some years now. I very much enjoyed Virtual PC as I had some systems that I needed to keep in a specific state as well as it worked great for testing. At any given time I usually have 5 different VM's available to be used on my 1 box. When it comes to XP Mode in Windows 7, it is my opinion that XP Mode was designed to run 1 XP OS VM. While you can run multiple VM's in Windows 7's virtualization environment, I found managing them very difficult and not nearly as easy as Virtual PC. Unfortunately, "XP mode" is the replacement for Virtual PC. As I found XP Mode very difficult to manage multiple VM's, I was forced to look for a 3rd party app. If you find that it works ok for you, I say more power to you, but I find that trying to run more then 1 VM within Windows 7's virtualization environment not fun. VirtualBox works great for me and it sounds like it's likely close to the same thing as VMWare's VMPlayer. I didn't look at the VM Player because at the time I was looking I thought that the VM Player was only good for running VM's, but you couldn't create them. Looks like I was wrong about that (or they have changed it since last I looked). Just my $.02 worth.

eric2820
eric2820

This was an interesting article, but it misses the point for our home built system... and that's I only have one system! I need to understand how to create a VM of my exisiting installation of Win-XP, store it on an external disk, Wipe C:, install Win-7 and run the VM I created previously on the same machine it was built on, but under a different OS. Having said that, your approach might work with the addeded step of installing Win-7 on a clean C: drive.

old.dad.72
old.dad.72

I have just finished installing my XP Pro program, with all of my software, into a virtual machine on my Win 7 machine. And I must say that it is a no brainer when you follow the instructions that Greg Shultz listed. I have some old software games, dating back to Win 95 that I hope to resurrect and being able to do it from my Win 7 computer by simply clicking on to the VMware icon is really great. I'm sure I'll probably find hitches in the process, but its great to be able to follow the the new technology, even if I'll always be a long ways behind. Thank you, Mr. Shultz!

brian.harwood
brian.harwood

I actually use a linux base (Ubuntu) to run both XP and Win7 (and others) under VirtualBox. You can set up a dummy XP installation in a VM, add an extra drive to it, boot the source machine with a linux Live CD, then just (network) copy the entire source disk contents to the extra virtual drive. Now you can use that extra virtual drive as a new VM. Transferred an 80Gb XP installation with two partitions that way.

Stuff_For_Reflection
Stuff_For_Reflection

I run Windows 7 in XP and vice versa. As I mentioned in my loose post there are some caveats you need to keep in mind. You can choose the VM to run on the host only if you have security concerns, via NAT or bridge making the Windows XP a computer part of a workgroup or domain-member without little problems. You can even use the converted Windows XP image on an VMware ESX(i) servers for VDI access.

TitusHooker
TitusHooker

...that I am not sure of. There is the issue of the unallocated space at the front of the HDD that was XP. Do you think I could fire up Partition Magic 8 in XP under VMWare and do the partition work all the while under Win7. I think probably so. And thanx for your direction. You have been very helpful. Ric

Dead Horse
Dead Horse

You add or remove programs (and updates) the same way you would with a physical box. You've just taken a snapshot of it and moved it from a physical box to a virtual box. Your Windows XP install is accessed and used as you always did. Just this time, you're doing it INSIDE another computer, in a virtual session.

Greg Shultz
Greg Shultz

...tried installing a virtual 64-bit OS on a 32-bit host before, but I would imagine that it is possible... The two should essentially be independent of one another, other than the fact that the 64-bit virtual will require that the hardware on the host system matches the system requirements.

deICERAY
deICERAY

I have volumes of stories of pc-related problems that only I experience. My friends are astounded every time when I tell them what's happened lately; this goes back to C-64 days. Things only happen to me. I must have cursed too loudly one day, pissed off some computer-god somewhere and have suffered ever since. The most recent mystery that no one could solve (and don't bother trying, I've heard them all)was SP3 update creating false passwords for login accounts, where they never existed previously and fotally locking me out of the system. Nothing could reveal them, nothing could correct them, except a total fresh re-install. Never a dull moment around here. Thanks for replying.

Shane Grant
Shane Grant

You can definitely image both your C: and D: partitions from your single physical disk onto a single virtual disk. How I accomplished this was with the following: - Made a disk image of my C: and D: drives to a USB External Drive. - On my new PC installed vmware server for windows(Free), and vmware Converter (Free). - Created a new Virtual Machine with vmware server - made my disk the same (empty) size as my entire physical disk from my old PC. - I made a boot image iso and mounted it to the Virtual Machine as it's CDROM disc. - I booted the Virtual Machine with the boot iso image, then wrote the disk image to the empty virtual disk. - BEFORE BOOTING your virtual machine for the 2nd time and after completing the imaging, you must run vmware converter on the virtual machine. - In vmware converter I selected the option to import an 'unknown' virtual machine version to a specific version (vmware server for windows). - vmware converter took the original disk image contents that is now stored on the virtual disk and converted them to a compatible virtual machine with drivers. - you can then boot the new virtual machine with all partitions intact and the entire XP installation as it was on the old PC.

Greg Shultz
Greg Shultz

... as I have not tried that configuration. Anyone out there have experience with this type of setup? I suppose that you could just try it and see what happens. Of course, you need to make a backup or image so that you can return to normal should it not work.

QAonCall
QAonCall

Sorry for the delay, I was in Vegas. My original post did not include (after reading your post) that I host my VM's using VPC from ms. That was more my point, rather than using the third party application (vmware). With VPC, and the ability to use XP mode the user has a very stable and secure platform, that can host as much hardware as necessary to accomplish pretty much anything you need. I also did not reply to the memory management piece, but I see someone linked to MS about this. Thanks...sorry for the delay.

ABrown
ABrown

agreed i use VirtualBox and would recommend it over VMPlayer or Workstation. i have roughly 10 vm's on it now that i run test for new/update/backward compatibility of software. Private networks to keep everything separate and it does everything you will need for virtualization. mounts every VM format too

mike
mike

I too have only one system and a setup list for that would prove very useful. One other major question on the hardware side. What about Memory? So you have a WinXP 32bit install running and you want to run a win 7 64bit OS and keep that exisiting XP 32bit instalation. what if you want to and can run more memory say 4 or 6 gig's? Thanks very much for the time and article.

deICERAY
deICERAY

Please let me know if you can get ANYHING to run in a virtual XP window - especially games, especially old ones! I am a complete Doubting- Thomas on this one - I say you will not be able to run 99% of anything old in the window - no drivers, no support. BUT - I'd love to be wrong. My experience was that nothing ran.

jeferris
jeferris

this sounds like something many techs might be interested in for details. I know I would. There's always been at least one xp app I needed and wine is ...

Stuff_For_Reflection
Stuff_For_Reflection

If you run Partition magic in the VM you will not see any other disk then the virtual disk itself. (Unless you get creative that is and you add a HDD as a raw disk then yes.) Within VMware ESX(i) this is called adding an RDM. On a setup as yours I would not use it as you might break the partition of windows 7 itself in which the .vdk resides which is in effect you virtual WXP disk using by the VMplayer.

Stuff_For_Reflection
Stuff_For_Reflection

Within any x64 OS (Host) you should be able to run its cousin x86 OS's (Guests). Within an x86 Host you can run any x86 version of OS as long as they are supported (look through the documentation of VMplayer which you can download from the website.) Running x64 version Guests on a x86 Host is a no-no far as I know. The best Host for VMware software is x64 as it will support 3.x Gb RAM and more. The x86 host is limited by the x86 OS. PS If you want to test the bare-metal hypervisor ESX(i) 4.0 you can do so within VMplayer 3.x or VMworkstation 7.x if the PC is EMT64/AMD64 ready. Basically you could run virtual servers running on a virtualized ESX hypervisor with vCenter within VMplayer. Ofcourse you might want to have a bulkier machine for testing of this kind. 6GB or more is then a must imho. However I would use VMworkstation 7.x as it also includes additional options of teams etc.

Greg Shultz
Greg Shultz

...Figure C and you'll see that you can configure the amount of memory that the VM will have. As such, you can have 6GB of RAM on the host and allocate 1 or 2 GB to XP.

donaldgagnon1
donaldgagnon1

I, too, just picked up a Win7, 64 bit system with 6GB RAM and had that same question about aces sing all 6GB if I run the WinXP 32bit install on it. Any thoughts on this?

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