Running Virtual PC under February CTP of Vista

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So it will interest you to know that running Virtual PC 2004 under the February CTP release of Windows Vista is a much nicer experience than it has been in prior builds of Windows Vista.  For one thing - networking is now completely functional.  In fact there are only two issues with running Virtual PC under the February CTP release of Windows Vista:

  1. Desktop composition will be disabled while running virtual machines

    Desktop composition (also known as 'Glass') is what gives you all the cool 3D desktop stuff under Windows Vista.  Unfortunately desktop composition requires that all video data be written to an offscreen buffer and then composited through its 3D engine.  Virtual PC uses DirectDraw - which locks the physical display and draws directly to it.  When this happens - desktop composition is disabled.  Normally this is not a problem - as most DirectDraw applications run in fullscreen mode - so you do not notice.  This is something that we are going to need to change in Virtual PC in order to be fully compatible with Windows Vista.

  2. With desktop composition disabled, moving an active virtual machine will result in corrupted graphics until the virtual machine updates its display

    This is a bug in Windows Vista - but it is fairly easy to deal with.


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  • ohh so needs 512MB of ram..... :(

    I have 512MB physical memory so I won't be able to test it :'(
  • grey out partition - create a new one, format it (it still says it's unusable) then reset the vpc - go through the install again and, hey presto, you can use the partition.
  • Oh - i should mention - with 600+ of ram it still crashes as soon as the cd key screen comes up :(
  • I had just installed the Beta when the Feb CTP was release. Based on the information here about setting up the drive first, everything went great. I downloaded the Feb CTP and have tried numerous times to install. It gets into step 2 of installing goes just a little way on the progress bar, looks like it is working, runs the DVD drive the whole time, shows disk activity every once in awhile, but I have let it run for many hours and it never does anything. Any ideas?
  • I have the same problem as Nicholas -

    I get this error 30 secs after clicking Install Now (BOOTING only off dvd not from windows -  works if I 'upgrade' from XP):

    Windows Setup: setup.exe - Application Error

    The exception unknown software exception (0xe0000100)
    occurred in the application at location 0x77e4028b.

    And if I click OK it takes me back to the first screen ('install now', 'release notes', etc.). Any ideas?

  • Hi All,

    If you are talking about Vista under Virtual PC - please checkout  This post is about Virtual PC under Vista.

  • Whoops didn't read the whole thing... its working now
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Running Virtual PC under February CTP of Vista