Yet another VPC installation question

Discussion in 'Virtual PC' started by EW, Nov 28, 2007.

  1. EW

    EW Guest

    I've successfully created three VPCs on my Windows XP host: Windows 98, ME,
    and XP. My question: can I use the vhd and vmc files of these three and use
    them to create identical and functional VPCs on ANOTHER Windows XP
    computer?? I'm thinking that the hardware differences on the new machine
    may somehow cause the VPCs to run erratically. Thanks.

    EW, Nov 28, 2007
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  2. EW

    Bo Berglund Guest

    If you make a *copy* of the VHD files and then bring that copy over to
    another PC where you have installed VPC2007, then you can create a new
    virtual machine there and point it to the copied VHD disk and it will

    The beauty of VPC2007 is that the hardware on the host does not matter
    at all, the guest sees only the emulated (oldish) hardware and it will
    be the same for every VPC2007 installation.

    However, if you do this you will probably violate Microsoft license
    terms since you are duplicating the operating system. You need a
    separate license for each copy of each Windows machine you make!

    An alternative could be this:
    *Move* your guest VHD files to a USB connected disk. Then create a
    virtual machine in your primary computer and point it to this VHD
    When you want to run it on another host system just move the USB disk
    over and then create a guest there and point it to the VHD file on the
    USB disk. This wa you have only one single virtual machine but you can
    use it on several host systems and you are not violating the license
    terms anymore.

    Bo Berglund
    Bo Berglund, Nov 28, 2007
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  3. EW

    EW Guest


    Thanks Bo for the info. That answers everything! Regards.

    EW, Nov 29, 2007
  4. EW

    Paul Adare Guest

    This is not entirely correct as the CPU is virtualized, not emulated. A
    guest will always report the same CPU as the host has.
    Paul Adare, Nov 29, 2007
  5. Hi Bo:

    A related idea. I have a machine that is multi-booted (using the
    excellent Bootit NG) with several different Windows OS's (currently W2K,
    XP 86/64, Vista 86/64). With BootIt NG it can be arranged that only one
    OS partition at a time is present in the MBR, so each OS behaves as if
    it is the only OS on the computer; in particular each OS sees its own OS
    partition as drive C. It is also possible to have a common data area on
    a different partition (or drive).

    Suppose I take care to assign this data partition the same drive letter
    (say D) on all the OS's. If I then load VPC on each of these OS's, and
    put the virtual machines on the data partition, would it then be
    possible/permissible to use a common VMC file as well as a common VHD
    file for each of these host OS's?

    It seems to me that it would work, because the path to the VHD file will
    be the same on each host OS, and the guests on the different host OS's
    will appear identical (same MAC address) and so there will not be OS (or
    other software) licensing problems.
    David Wilkinson, Nov 29, 2007
  6. EW

    Paul Adare Guest

    That would be fine however, it really doesn't matter at all whether you're
    using a common VMC file or not. The issue here, as far as licensing goes is
    the installed OS which resides in the VHD file. For each VHD file with an
    installed OS you need a license.

    Paul Adare
    MVP - Virtual Machines
    CRT: A movie about a little alien who forgets his telephone number and must
    write home.
    Paul Adare, Nov 29, 2007
  7. Paul:


    The changing MAC address doesn't ever trigger re-activation (requiring a
    phone call)? This would be a real pain if I want to switch often between
    the two host OS's (as I might).

    Otherwise, of course, everything should be identical, because the host
    is the same machine (CPU etc) in each case.

    [I really do not feel I would be violating (even the spirit of) the
    license in this scenario, because only one of these guest machines can
    be run at any one time.]
    David Wilkinson, Nov 29, 2007
  8. EW

    Paul Adare Guest

    No, the MAC address in and of itself is not enough to trigger activation.
    You need to be careful here. For anything other than Windows Server System
    software a license is required for an OS or application that is installed,
    it does not have to be running. For Windows Server System software you only
    need enough licenses to cover what is running and not what is installed.
    Paul Adare, Nov 29, 2007
  9. Paul:

    Well, there is only one virtual machine. When I am running it on one
    host, there is no "other installation".

    I understand that if I have different virtual machines in this setup
    (say two different XP machines, or one XP and one Vista) then I need
    licenses for each OS and software (apart from anything else, I might
    actually run these machines simultaneously).

    What is "Windows Server System software"?
    David Wilkinson, Nov 29, 2007
  10. EW

    Paul Adare Guest

    Right, but for client OS' you need a license for each installed virtual
    machine whether or not it is currently running. If you only have a single
    virtual machine then you only need one license.

    Paul Adare
    MVP - Virtual Machines
    Conversational mode: Describes the typical office the day after a major
    sporting event.
    Paul Adare, Nov 29, 2007
  11. Mark:

    Yes, but in the situation I was originally talking about (the same
    virtual machine running on different hosts) there is only one virtual

    [The guest license I would be using here is my MSDN license, but I am
    not keen to eat up my 10 licenses on what is, to be frank, mostly just
    playing around.]
    David Wilkinson, Nov 29, 2007
  12. EW

    Paul Adare Guest

    Not for Windows Server SKUs.
    Paul Adare, Nov 29, 2007
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