Running Virtual PC under Hyper-V Beta

They say that a picture speaks a thousands words, so:


Yes!  This is Windows Server 2008 running the Hyper-V beta with Windows Server 2003 installed in a virtual machine, which in turn has Virtual PC 2007 installed and running Windows 98.

And the performance is much better than you might think.  In fact a little while ago I had this sort of setup with Virtual PC running a Windows Server 2003 virtual machine – which I then installed Office 2007 into and used it to check my email from time to time.

Now for a couple of caveats:

  1. Booting through the BIOS of Virtual PC is quite slow.  Expect to wait for ~1 minute before the guest OS gets up and running.
  2. Get Virtual Machine Additions installed as quickly as possible – it really makes things much faster (for fairly obvious reasons Virtual PC cannot use hardware virtualization in this configuration).
  3. This is in no way supported! If you try this an find an interesting bug – feel free to send me a message but please do not call Microsoft Product Support!

To answer some other questions:

  1. No – there are no special steps to get this to work,  it just works.
  2. Yes – Virtual Server works too.