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  1. #1
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    Choosing virtual-machine software

    I'm looking into setting up a VM on my relatively new Win10 computer. I've used Virtual PC on Win7 and VMWare on Win95 but never worked extensively with either. This would be used for running FreeDOS in one machine and possibly WinXP in another. A third might be used to play with Win10 preview. IOW, the requirements aren't going to be too demanding.

    There are three free choices that I know of; Hyper-V, VMWare Reader, and VirtualBox. Is there any particular advantage of one over the other?

    I believe that I can use Hyper-V to convert a XPMode .vhd from my Win7 which would simplify that part. But that's not a huge advantage.
    Graham Smith
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    "For every expert there is an equal and opposite expert.", Arthur C. Clarke (1917 - 2008)

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    Quote Originally Posted by gsmith-plm View Post
    I'm looking into setting up a VM on my relatively new Win10 computer. I've used Virtual PC on Win7 and VMWare on Win95 but never worked extensively with either. This would be used for running FreeDOS in one machine and possibly WinXP in another. A third might be used to play with Win10 preview. IOW, the requirements aren't going to be too demanding.

    There are three free choices that I know of; Hyper-V, VMWare Reader, and VirtualBox. Is there any particular advantage of one over the other?

    I believe that I can use Hyper-V to convert a XPMode .vhd from my Win7 which would simplify that part. But that's not a huge advantage.
    If I were to try one I'd probably pick the VMWare offering but I'm soured on the brand because I put Fusion on my MacBookPro OS X with Snow Leopard, then when Mac upgrades started being a bit more frequent I skipped Lion but got Mountain Lion followed by Mavericks then Yosemite and now El Capitan!, all in a span of 5 years. Each upgrade killed my version of Fusion unless I wanted to buy an upgrade. For no more I ended up needing it [only have 6 clients with a Mac] I no longer have it installed.

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    I use VMware Player as it's free and I'm an old hand with VMware.
    VirtualBox is also free and has good reports.
    Hyper-V should be fine but it's not free, you need Windows Professional or higher.

    You also need a CPU with virtualization and it needs to be turned on in the BIOS. You can check with GRC's Securable.

    cheers, Paul

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    i have Win10 Pro so Hyper-V should be available to me. Anyone have any experience with it?

    It's assumed that all three have been tested to work with Win10 by now, but I don't know that for sure.

    One thing I didn't like about the Virtual PC / XP Mode on Win7 is that it didn't give you an option as to whether or not to save a session when you closed it. Since a VM is sometimes used to experiment with something, it's helpful to have the option of not saving the changes.

    Addendum: I'm looking to run a virtual machine from within Win10 not as a Virtual server - if that matters.
    Last edited by gsmith-plm; 2015-10-26 at 09:52.
    Graham Smith
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    "For every expert there is an equal and opposite expert.", Arthur C. Clarke (1917 - 2008)

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    All of the VM software allows you to save or discard changes.
    You have Pro so install Hyper-V, it'll be fine.

    A couple of tips.
    Use less memory than you think you need for each VM, you can always add more.
    Use much less disk than you think you need....
    Don't add hardware you won't require, I find a disk, network and sometimes USB is all you need.

    cheers, Paul

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    I'll give Hyper-V a run. If I don't like it, then I can always switch.

    One thing I just ran across in reading about VMWare Player is that it lacks the ability to create a new VM from an ISO. That might be a limiting factor.
    Graham Smith
    DataSmith, Delaware
    "For every expert there is an equal and opposite expert.", Arthur C. Clarke (1917 - 2008)

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    Quote Originally Posted by gsmith-plm View Post
    It's assumed that all three have been tested to work with Win10 by now, but I don't know that for sure.

    Addendum: I'm looking to run a virtual machine from within Win10 not as a Virtual server - if that matters.
    I used "XP Mode" with Win7 for several programs that wouldn't run on Win7 and later; it was a little cumbersome. When I bought a Win10 home system, I played with VMWare and VirtualBox. I found VirtualBox easier to use. VirtualBox had rapid updates after Win10 was released; the 1st I tried had issues, but they said it was not yet (then) reliable with Win10 host or guest.

    I had a boxed version of XP-Pro which I installed. I don't need networking, communication strictly via shared folders. It works well.

    I found a FreeDOS package which included networking; folder sharing is not supported. It works well.

    Just to play, I installed an Ubuntu distribution. It works fine too.

    There are MANY pre-built virtual machines (guests) available from MANY reputable sources.

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    Quote Originally Posted by gsmith-plm View Post
    One thing I just ran across in reading about VMWare Player is that it lacks the ability to create a new VM from an ISO
    Nope, not true. You can create a new VM, mount an ISO and install away, or just run from the ISO with no installation. It is a fully blown VM system for non-commercial use.

    cheers, Paul

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    It would seem to be quite impossible to migrate the XPMode vhd to Hyper-V under Win10. This is not a complete surprise to me because XPMode wasn't a "normal" virtual machine. What is confusing is that several web sites say it can be done. So either it used to be possible in Win8 (which I doubt) or people who have never tried it are assuming it can.

    Part of the confusion I'm seeing in using Hyper-V is that a lot of what is written about it is either not dated or is dated prior to July of this year, meaning that it's specific to Hyper-V in Win8. Alternatively, it often seems to be pertaining to server versions of Hyper-V.

    <slightly off topic>
    This is part of the almost daily frustration I am having with Win10. Much has changed from Win8 and even from the preview versions of Win10 and it seems that about 80% of what's on the interweb is somewhere between somewhat and completely wrong when it comes to what's currently shipping.

    Add to that the almost pathological tendency to avoid including dates and/or versions on articles and blogs makes it extremely difficult to determine if something applies or not. Even the software manufacturers are guilty of this.
    Graham Smith
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    "For every expert there is an equal and opposite expert.", Arthur C. Clarke (1917 - 2008)

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    Quote Originally Posted by gsmith-plm View Post
    <slightly off topic>
    This is part of the almost daily frustration I am having with Win10. Much has changed from Win8 and even from the preview versions of Win10 and it seems that about 80% of what's on the interweb is somewhere between somewhat and completely wrong when it comes to what's currently shipping.

    Add to that the almost pathological tendency to avoid including dates and/or versions on articles and blogs makes it extremely difficult to determine if something applies or not. Even the software manufacturers are guilty of this.
    Have to agree with a lot of that, see too many times where something is presented as fact and there's no reference to where it came from. I try my best to give a link to what I have read, too much out there to remember and be able to quote word for word. There's many others smarter than me and I rely upon them knowing what is accurate and reliable but without a reference how can they be relied upon.

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    Set your search criteria for the last 1 or 2 months only. That will eliminate a whole lot, not perfect but every bit helps.
    David

    Just because you don't know where you are going doesn't mean any road will get you there.

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    Quote Originally Posted by wavy View Post
    Set your search criteria for the last 1 or 2 months only. That will eliminate a whole lot, not perfect but every bit helps.
    Not a bad idea, but search engines don't always get that right for various reasons.

    What's often even more confusing is that things have changed that people are not aware of. So, an answer to a question that was correct during the Win10 preview may not be correct with the shipping version. Even very recently, knowledgeable people have written things based on (one of) the last preview releases that changed in the final release. This is an area where the widely tested preview failed.
    Last edited by gsmith-plm; 2015-10-27 at 12:45.
    Graham Smith
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    I've got a really hair-brained question that I will ask here before going on a quest for an answer elsewhere.

    Is it possible to use an image backup from Macrium or some other program as the basis for a VM in any of the three afore mentioned VM programs?

    Here's what I'm wondering, I have an old laptop with WinXP on it. The laptop is ready for the scrap heap but it's got a couple worthwhile programs installed that won't run on newer versions of Windows. It would be nice to simply restore an image backup into a VM to pull up if needed.
    Last edited by gsmith-plm; 2015-10-28 at 10:03.
    Graham Smith
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    "For every expert there is an equal and opposite expert.", Arthur C. Clarke (1917 - 2008)

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    Macrium viBoot Technology Preview

    Check out:

    Macrium viBoot Technology Preview
    http://www.macrium.com/viboot.aspx

    I believe there was a way to do this before this but I have not refound it!

    I am having trouble finding tools that used to be on their site.

    David

    Just because you don't know where you are going doesn't mean any road will get you there.

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    Found more info
    http://forum.macrium.com/Topic3967.aspx


    And the old way (which does NOT come up in an onsite search)
    http://kb.macrium.com/knowledgebasearticle50005.aspx

    David

    Just because you don't know where you are going doesn't mean any road will get you there.

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