Autorun and Windows Virtual PC

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Some people have noticed that when they attach a CD or ISO image to a Windows Virtual PC virtual machine, it does not autorun.  But others have reported that autorun is working correctly for them.  So what is happening here?

The key to understanding what is happening is to remember that in Windows Virtual PC, integrated mode uses Remote Desktop technology.

When developing Windows Virtual PC we worked hard to try and get the Remote Desktop technology to work well in the Virtual PC usage patterns – but there are some issues that we were not able to address.  CD Autorun was one of them.

When you are using Remote Desktop to connect to a remote computer – you do not want a CD (inserted by someone else at the physical computer) to autorun in your remote desktop session – so this functionality is disabled.  This has come across into Windows Virtual PC such that CD autorun only works if integrated mode is disabled.  If integrated mode is enabled you will need to open “My Computer” and start the program on the CD manually instead.


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  • Hi. I open the DVD and double click on Autorun and Setup.exe and it still does not run on my Virtual Machine. Using MACOS with Parallels.

  • Hi, caught this by its perfect title - but my issue is that Windows 7 permissions are messing with VPC - so that in the VM I can't load the VPC drivers CD (not truly an autorun issue, but its target - setup.exe -- won't run).  I'm administrator.  

    VPC seems confusing - after installing it I saw no menu item for it.   SO having done a P2V with Paragon tools, I just double-clicked the control file for the VM and it started -- I even tried "run as" but that's too indirect - since you can't "run as" a file association type of start - only an executable.  

    Will dig further.  Thanks for the great blog.

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Autorun and Windows Virtual PC