Running Virtual Server / Virtual PC on Windows Vista Beta 1

I have been running Windows Vista for a while now
(one of the benefits of being a Microsoft employee) and now that the
rest of the world can access it I thought I should pass on some
information about running Virtual Server / Virtual PC on top of Windows
Vista Beta 1.

There are a number of issues that you should be aware of:

  1. Virtual Networking does not work on top of
    Windows Vista Beta 1.  Yup, this is really annoying – but it does
    not work.  Thankfully for Virtual PC users shared networking
    continues to work just fine.
  2. Upgrading to Windows Vista Beta 1 on a machine
    with Virtual PC or Virtual Server installed will generate an error:
    AddDriverPackageIntoDriverStore:Failed to install the driver
    package.  So you should uninstall VPC or VS before attempting to
    upgrade your host.

Some Virtual Server specific issues are:

  1. A number of host crashes have been reported running Virtual Server on the x64 version of Windows Vista Beta 1.
  2. IIS is installed, but disabled by default on
    Windows Vista Beta 1. You will need to start the World Wide Web
    Publishing Service from services.msc
  3. Connecting via VMRC to a running VM will lock
    the mouse to the window. The host key will not work to break out of the
    VMRC session. To break out of the VMRC window, use CTRL-ALT-DEL and
    then click Cancel.

Some Virtual PC specific issues are:

  1. Starting a virtual machine causes Glass (uDWM)
    to crash (for those who do not know – the uDWM is what implements the
    ‘cool 3D effects’). This is actually kind of interesting to see as the
    entire desktop seamlessly switches back to 2D mode – and when you exit
    Virtual PC it goes back to 3D mode.
  2. When LUA is enabled, you must manually launch
    Virtual PC with elevated privileges, otherwise Virtual PC cannot write
    to / or launch any virtual machines.

Eh…  I know that that sounds kind of grizzly –
but as I said I have been running Windows Vista for a while now and
have been happily using Virtual PC on top of it.  And don’t worry
– we will have this all sorted by the time we ship 😉