W7's XP Mode vs. VirtualBox and VMware Workstation.


A

Ant

Hi!

I use the latest/newest VirtualBox and VMware Workstation versions. I
like VMware Workstation a lot more because it has drag and drop between
guests and hosts, be able to pause session and exit the program and come
back later, clipboard sharing, etc. Obviously, VirtualBox is faster and
free compared to VMware Workstations.

I noticed W7 comes with its XP Mode in Connectix's VirtualPC (used it
many years ago on my PowerBook G4's Mac OS X 10.2.8 [didn't like it
though, but maybe it is a lot better now?]. How is it compared to the
other two VMs? I assume this only works with XP SP3 and not other OSes
like Linux, Windows 2000 SP4, 9x, etc. Can I do the same actions like in
VMware Workstations (e.g., drag and drop between hosts, pausing session
and exiting program, snapshots)?

Thank you in advance. :)
--
"What is this? A center for ants?!" "...What?" "How can we be expected
to teach children to learn how read, if they can't even fit inside the
building?" "Derek, it's just a--" "I don't want to hear your excuses!
The center has to be at least... three times bigger than this!" "...He's
absolutely right!" --Zoolander movie
/\___/\ Ant @ http://antfarm.ma.cx (Personal Web Site)
/ /\ /\ \ Ant's Quality Foraged Links: http://aqfl.net
| |o o| |
\ _ / If crediting, then use Ant nickname and AQFL URL/link.
( ) If e-mailing, then axe ANT from its address if needed.
Ant is currently not listening to any songs on this computer.
 
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V

VanguardLH

Ant said:
I noticed W7 comes with its XP Mode ...
You don't mention WHICH edition of Windows 7 that you have. Only some
include support for XP Mode.

The draw to XP Mode is its seamless operation. Rather than having to
open a console to the VM to see the OS running within it, you can see
your VM'ed apps in the Start menu and run them like they were normal
apps in your host OS.

http://www.hanselman.com/blog/Windows7SeamlessAppsInWindowsVirtualPCVirtualXPAndApplicationCompatibility.aspx
http://download.microsoft.com/download/8/1/F/81FECED0-2BA3-4029-A39E-1B00903AFC88/WXPMode_HowToguide.pdf

For many users, they don't want to manage VMs or configure a separate
VMM (VM manager) or show an OS inside their OS.
 
A

Ant

You don't mention WHICH edition of Windows 7 that you have. Only some
include support for XP Mode.
I don't have ANY yet. I am debating to get Home Premium (without XPM and
save money) or Professional (with XPM, but paying for that extra
feature), or just use another third party VM like VirtualBox and/or
VMware Workstation.

The draw to XP Mode is its seamless operation. Rather than having to
open a console to the VM to see the OS running within it, you can see
your VM'ed apps in the Start menu and run them like they were normal
apps in your host OS.

http://www.hanselman.com/blog/Windows7SeamlessAppsInWindowsVirtualPCVirtualXPAndApplicationCompatibility.aspx
http://download.microsoft.com/download/8/1/F/81FECED0-2BA3-4029-A39E-1B00903AFC88/WXPMode_HowToguide.pdf

For many users, they don't want to manage VMs or configure a separate
VMM (VM manager) or show an OS inside their OS.
Interesting. I wonder why VirtualBox and VMware Workstation don't do this!
--
Allah's Apostle said, "Once while a prophet amongst the prophets was
taking a rest underneath a tree, an ant bit him. He, therefore, ordered
that his luggage be taken away from underneath that tree and then
ordered that the dwelling place of the ants should be set on fire. Allah
sent him a revelation: 'Wouldn't it have been sufficient to burn a
single ant (that bit you)?'" --Translation of Sahih Bukhari, Book 54,
Number 536
/\___/\ Ant @ http://antfarm.ma.cx (Personal Web Site)
/ /\ /\ \ Ant's Quality Foraged Links: http://aqfl.net
| |o o| |
\ _ / If crediting, then use Ant nickname and AQFL URL/link.
( ) If e-mailing, then axe ANT from its address if needed.
Ant is currently not listening to any songs on this computer.
 
A

Andy Burns

Ant said:
I don't have ANY yet. I am debating to get Home Premium (without XPM and
save money) or Professional (with XPM, but paying for that extra
feature), or just use another third party VM like VirtualBox and/or
VMware Workstation.
then you need to buy an XP licence.
Interesting. I wonder why VirtualBox and VMware Workstation don't do this!
Perhaps not appearing in the *same* start menu, but apps can run in
seamless mode in virtuaal box, with "stacked" start menus/task bars.
 
P

Paul

Ant said:
I don't have ANY yet. I am debating to get Home Premium (without XPM and
save money) or Professional (with XPM, but paying for that extra
feature), or just use another third party VM like VirtualBox and/or
VMware Workstation.



Interesting. I wonder why VirtualBox and VMware Workstation don't do this!
I think you'll find VirtualBox is actually the better alternative.

Seamless integration isn't always a good idea, because you'll forget
what OS it's running in, what file systems the program can see, and so on.
And your program, if in seamless mode, will be limited to whatever
Terminal Services supports in terms of graphics APIs.

One disadvantage I found, of the virtual pc for windows 7, was the
crappy ribbon interface for controlling virtual machines. The
interface doesn't look the same as VPC2007 did, at least
it didn't on my Home Premium laptop. (I was testing the version
of virtual pc they use for "WinXP Mode", and that's not the same
as VPC2007.)

One advantage VirtualBox has, is low level (VID/PID)
redirection of USB packets. It means I can run a
webcam within VirtualBox. All I have to do, is install
the option pack, then use the list of USB devices detected,
and tell VirtualBox to grab all the packets headed for
a certain VID and PID. The Microsoft virtual pc, provides
some capabilities, but it works at the USB storage class
level. Virtual pc may be able to deflect my USB pen drive,
to the guest OS. But Virtual PC doesn't support any
arbitrary USB class. Whereas, by working at a lower
level, VirtualBox raises the possibility of working
with more device types (because it's not limited to
working with a restricted set of standard USB classes).

On the downside, VirtualBox is rigid in a non-useful
way, with GUID identification for things. Sometimes,
in the settings, you'll want VirtualBox to "forget"
about some VHD you've been working with, and it won't
forget, and you end up artificially changing the names
of some of the things you're working on, to get around it.
So the workarounds needed, make it less convenient than
the point and click interface of VPC2007. So it's not
entirely a "rose garden". But still, if I had to choose
what to load on the laptop again, I'd pick VirtualBox
rather than the watered down Windows 7 virtual pc.
Integration or not. Windows virtual pc will never support
desktop integration properly for linux, so you're never
going to be able to drag and drop a file from Windows 7
onto your Ubuntu desktop. Support for Linux, is close
to non-existent (only commercial Linuxes stand a chance
at support, if at all). With VirtualBox, you stand
a slightly better chance, because they don't
"have an axe to grind" like Microsoft does.

Paul
 
W

Wolf K

I don't have ANY yet. I am debating to get Home Premium (without XPM and
save money) or Professional (with XPM, but paying for that extra
feature), or just use another third party VM like VirtualBox and/or
VMware Workstation.
[...]

Win7-Pro-64bit runs pretty well everything, and Compatibility Mode takes
care of most glitches. But most software worth having can and should be
updated to current levels anyhow. Some of the freeware/OSS isn't
available in 64bit, but that's not a problem.

HTH,
Wolf K.
 
A

Ant

then you need to buy an XP licence.
I will just the former XP key I used.

Perhaps not appearing in the *same* start menu, but apps can run in
seamless mode in virtuaal box, with "stacked" start menus/task bars.
Ah.
--
"Your mom's legs are so hairy, the ants think they're in a jungle."
--unknown
/\___/\ Ant @ http://antfarm.ma.cx (Personal Web Site)
/ /\ /\ \ Ant's Quality Foraged Links: http://aqfl.net
| |o o| |
\ _ / If crediting, then use Ant nickname and AQFL URL/link.
( ) If e-mailing, then axe ANT from its address if needed.
Ant is currently not listening to any songs on this computer.
 
A

Ant

OK, I found a 64-bit W7 Pro. HPE machine (not mine) so I tried it out.

I wasn't really impressed. No drag and drop between host and guest, but
copy and paste do work. I noticed cut doesn't really cut. I guess sleep
will do for pausing since I can exit VirtualPC and do whatever like
reboot, shutdown, etc. my host. I noticed I can't use my Windows hotkeys
in XP guest. All of them go to host! VirtualBox and VMware Workstation
let you do them inside guests. :( No snapshots and reverts like in the
other two programs? How disappointing.

I guess I will buy Home Premium then. VirtualPC is still weak IMO like I
used in Mac OS X 10.2.8 many years ago.

Please kindly let me know if I missed something with VirtualPC's XP Mode.

I think you'll find VirtualBox is actually the better alternative.

Seamless integration isn't always a good idea, because you'll forget
what OS it's running in, what file systems the program can see, and so on.
And your program, if in seamless mode, will be limited to whatever
Terminal Services supports in terms of graphics APIs.

One disadvantage I found, of the virtual pc for windows 7, was the
crappy ribbon interface for controlling virtual machines. The
interface doesn't look the same as VPC2007 did, at least
it didn't on my Home Premium laptop. (I was testing the version
of virtual pc they use for "WinXP Mode", and that's not the same
as VPC2007.)

One advantage VirtualBox has, is low level (VID/PID)
redirection of USB packets. It means I can run a
webcam within VirtualBox. All I have to do, is install
the option pack, then use the list of USB devices detected,
and tell VirtualBox to grab all the packets headed for
a certain VID and PID. The Microsoft virtual pc, provides
some capabilities, but it works at the USB storage class
level. Virtual pc may be able to deflect my USB pen drive,
to the guest OS. But Virtual PC doesn't support any
arbitrary USB class. Whereas, by working at a lower
level, VirtualBox raises the possibility of working
with more device types (because it's not limited to
working with a restricted set of standard USB classes).

On the downside, VirtualBox is rigid in a non-useful
way, with GUID identification for things. Sometimes,
in the settings, you'll want VirtualBox to "forget"
about some VHD you've been working with, and it won't
forget, and you end up artificially changing the names
of some of the things you're working on, to get around it.
So the workarounds needed, make it less convenient than
the point and click interface of VPC2007. So it's not
entirely a "rose garden". But still, if I had to choose
what to load on the laptop again, I'd pick VirtualBox
rather than the watered down Windows 7 virtual pc.
Integration or not. Windows virtual pc will never support
desktop integration properly for linux, so you're never
going to be able to drag and drop a file from Windows 7
onto your Ubuntu desktop. Support for Linux, is close
to non-existent (only commercial Linuxes stand a chance
at support, if at all). With VirtualBox, you stand
a slightly better chance, because they don't
"have an axe to grind" like Microsoft does.
--
"If they are offered winged ants, people will eat them." --African
/\___/\ Ant @ http://antfarm.ma.cx (Personal Web Site)
/ /\ /\ \ Ant's Quality Foraged Links: http://aqfl.net
| |o o| |
\ _ / If crediting, then use Ant nickname and AQFL URL/link.
( ) If e-mailing, then axe ANT from its address if needed.
Ant is currently not listening to any songs on this computer.
 
A

Ant

I don't have ANY yet. I am debating to get Home Premium (without XPM and
save money) or Professional (with XPM, but paying for that extra
feature), or just use another third party VM like VirtualBox and/or
VMware Workstation.
[...]

Win7-Pro-64bit runs pretty well everything, and Compatibility Mode takes
care of most glitches. But most software worth having can and should be
updated to current levels anyhow. Some of the freeware/OSS isn't
available in 64bit, but that's not a problem.
Well, it was more than backward compatibility but for testing, checking
out stuff, etc.
--
"Yeah, what's left of it. I was in the militia -- national guard...
That's good! Wasn't any war any more than there's war between men and
ants." --stranger; "And we're eat-able ants. I found that out... What
will they do with us?" --Pierson from H.G. Wells' The War of the Worlds
/\___/\ Ant @ http://antfarm.ma.cx (Personal Web Site)
/ /\ /\ \ Ant's Quality Foraged Links: http://aqfl.net
| |o o| |
\ _ / If crediting, then use Ant nickname and AQFL URL/link.
( ) If e-mailing, then axe ANT from its address if needed.
Ant is currently not listening to any songs on this computer.
 
A

Ant

Not legally, unless it's a retail copy.
It is retail. I will be dumping the installation when I go to v7. It
will be the same PC. Just wiping it clean and then fresh install of v7.
--
"In every enemy that is an ant, behold an elephant." --Turkish
/\___/\ Ant @ http://antfarm.ma.cx (Personal Web Site)
/ /\ /\ \ Ant's Quality Foraged Links: http://aqfl.net
| |o o| |
\ _ / If crediting, then use Ant nickname and AQFL URL/link.
( ) If e-mailing, then axe ANT from its address if needed.
Ant is currently not listening to any songs on this computer.
 
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V

VanguardLH

Ant said:
Andy Burns typed:


I will just the former XP key I used.
Doable as long as the Windows 7 you get is a FULL retail or OEM version,
not an upgrade version. An upgrade version invalidates the prior
version's license upon which the upgrade is based. If you upgrade to
Windows 7 from Windows Vista/XP/etc then you are still using the ONE
license through all those upgrades.

Windows XP --> Windows 7 upgrade
Windows XP license transfers to 7 or, conversely, Windows XP license is
invalidated to be replaced with Windows 7 license.

Windows XP
Windows 7 FULL or OEM version
Both licenses (Windows XP and Windows 7) remain intact and separate.

It's the Windows 7 copy that must be a full or OEM version so it doesn't
invalidate the Windows XP license.
 
V

VanguardLH

Andy said:
then you need to buy an XP licence.


Perhaps not appearing in the *same* start menu, but apps can run in
seamless mode in virtuaal box, with "stacked" start menus/task bars.
Interesting and handy (you get the guest's taskbar stacked atop the
host's taskbar). I don't know if you can get the guest's taskbar to
show up on the right-side (vertically) on the screen so you would have
the horizontal one for non-VM apps and the vertical one for VM'ed apps.

Alas, I've been hunting around and cannot find out how to make it really
seamless. You can use "vboxmanage startvm <vmname>" to load the VM when
you login but the VM will not be started in seamless mode. You'll have
to wait until the VMM (virtual machine manager) loads followed by the
auto-load of the guest VM and then remember to hit the Host+L key combo
(Ctrl+L) to put the VM into seamless mode. If you shutdown your host,
you'll have to remember to use Ctrl+L to again put the VM into seamless
mode. I haven't found a command-line method to load the VMM, auto-start
a VM, *and* have the VM load in seamless mode. For some users where you
would setup a VM for them to run old apps inside, starting the VM in
seamless mode when they login would really make it seamless and they'd
be less resistant to using their old apps.
 
A

Ant

Doable as long as the Windows 7 you get is a FULL retail or OEM version,
not an upgrade version. An upgrade version invalidates the prior
version's license upon which the upgrade is based. If you upgrade to
Windows 7 from Windows Vista/XP/etc then you are still using the ONE
license through all those upgrades.

Windows XP --> Windows 7 upgrade
Windows XP license transfers to 7 or, conversely, Windows XP license is
invalidated to be replaced with Windows 7 license.

Windows XP
Windows 7 FULL or OEM version
Both licenses (Windows XP and Windows 7) remain intact and separate.

It's the Windows 7 copy that must be a full or OEM version so it doesn't
invalidate the Windows XP license.
Yeah, that is why I don't want OEM version. I also upgrade my hardwares
every two years or so too. I wished MS still sold those family packs. :(
--
"When the ant grows wings it is about to die." --Arabic
/\___/\ Ant @ http://antfarm.ma.cx (Personal Web Site)
/ /\ /\ \ Ant's Quality Foraged Links: http://aqfl.net
| |o o| |
\ _ / If crediting, then use Ant nickname and AQFL URL/link.
( ) If e-mailing, then axe ANT from its address if needed.
Ant is currently not listening to any songs on this computer.
 
A

Ant

That doesn't make sense.


How does that limit your choice of license?
I was referring to the 64-bit W7 host.
--
"Ah. Those club kids did eat those ants up like popcorn." --CSI: Miami
(Wannabe episode; #218)
/\___/\ Ant @ http://antfarm.ma.cx (Personal Web Site)
/ /\ /\ \ Ant's Quality Foraged Links: http://aqfl.net
| |o o| |
\ _ / If crediting, then use Ant nickname and AQFL URL/link.
( ) If e-mailing, then axe ANT from its address if needed.
Ant is currently not listening to any songs on this computer.
 
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