Virtual PC

Another tool I had at my disposal was Microsoft Virtual PC. This is a product that enables you to run several operating systems inside your existing one, each one of them acting as a real PC.

This was very useful when I needed to test some of the things I created on a different server, a Windows 2003 server running Windows SharePoint Services for example.

After I had created my Windows 2003 image, I could use it on any PC I wanted to work on, on my laptop and on my desktop as well. This proved very useful when having to test against a specific machine.

A virtual PC can share its network with the host operating system, making it possible to run several virtual machines at one, simulating a complete network, acting as if it were unique servers on the network. This was a very nice feature before deploying something to the real production servers.


  • I've just started using VPC and it's nice to have. However I'm wondering how to handle Windows XP activation for my virtual instances. It looks like I either have to activate a virtual PC (a waste of a license), or re-install the image every 60 days.

    It takes hours to install XP and get it updated with service packs. I'm not smart enough to do a merge install thingy with SP2 already installed.

    I have MSDN universal, maybe the next set of disks will have XP ISO images with SP2 already installed..

  • I'm using VPC for a while now. And I found it a great program just for the same reasons you mention in your article. And Brad, just create one VPC image. Activate your license. And then copy this image each time you want to use your VPC to test some program. Then you only have to activate your VPC XP only once and use it many times. That's one of the advantages of VPC.

  • excuse me, where can i get it?

    It's a good tool to test ,or to debug.

    Maybe i should install win98,win2K,winXP and so on.So i can test my application on my own computer.


  • Hello,

    Does anyone know how to take an existing set of Ghost images (I have 6 in a single set total 11.5GB in size) and deploy that set to a virtual hard drive? Everything I have tried so far has failed. I tried putting 2 images on a DVD and that failed I even tried the microsoft knowledgebase article 824547 and that failed because it wasn't for the version of Virtual pc I have (2004) or the version of Ghost I'm using (8.2 Enterprise.)


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