The Need For Speed – under Virtual PC

No, this is not a post about how to speed up performance under Virtual PC.  Rather this is a post about how to enjoyably while away your Friday afternoon driving your race car in ‘The Need For Speed’ under Virtual PC.  This is the original game which has since spawned a long line of sequels. … Read more

Does it meet the bar?

When the team moved up to Microsoft from Connectix one thing that was quickly evident was that there were a number of ‘cultural’ differences between the two companies.  This was highlighted by the fact that when we started the entire program management and development teams were from Connectix while the majority of the test team… Read more

BeOS v5 under Virtual PC 2004

When I first started working at Connectix, one of my favorite past times was to tease the CTO, Eric Traut, about the fact that BeOS did not work under Virtual PC.  Eric is a bit of a perfectionist, and liked BeOS, so it bothered him that it did not work.  From time to time he… Read more rocks!

‘What Works and What Doesn’t in Microsoft Virtual PC 2004’ ( is a great website that is maintained by Jonathan Maltz.  It lists all reported operating systems that people have tried under Virtual PC.  At this stage there are 715 operating systems listed, 571 of which have been reported to work. I love this website… Read more

I’m number 1! :-)

Well my father just emailed me to let me know that if you Google for ‘Ben Armstrong’ this blog is the first on the list ( Hoo!… Read more

Please don’t use /3GB – okay?

Every now and then someone will report that they are having problems launching more than 10 or so virtual machines under Virtual Server.  Inevitably it turns out that they have enabled the /3GB boot option (  This option is usually recommended for applications that need lots of memory – it increases the amount of user-mode… Read more

What do you mean ‘The binary is the source’?

Yesterday I mentioned a utility that we include in the Virtual Machine Additions for DOS – ‘IDLE.COM’.  When we came across to Microsoft (from Connectix) we found out that for various technical and legal reasons – Microsoft has strict policies about having source code available for all shipping products (you would be surprised to find… Read more

Why does DOS use 100% CPU under Virtual PC?

From time to time someone notices that when they run DOS under Virtual PC it uses 100% of the host CPU to do absolutely nothing, and wonder why this is the case.  The answer is relatively simple – and it is: ‘DOS is never actually doing nothing’. Most modern operating systems are designed with the… Read more

Gaming Friday: ‘Raptor: Call of the Shadows’

In case no one has noticed – when Friday comes around – my main interest in Virtual PC is just to kick back and play a couple of games.  Today I felt like playing ‘Raptor: Call of the Shadows’ – this was a classic vertical scrolling fighter plane game released by Apogee (now 3DRealms) in… Read more