A while ago we received an email from a colleague inside Microsoft asking if we new about a spelling mistake in our product. They stated that we had used the word “vrtual” instead of virtual. Needless to say – we were surprised to hear about this – but it was soon confirmed:
If you look at the BIOS (or firmware) version string inside a virtual machine it says “VRTUAL”. After some investigation – we received a quick answer that the problem was that the SMBIOS field (where this data is stored) only supports a 6 character string, and “VIRTUAL” is 7 characters long.
Now – some of you are likely saying “Ben! HYPERV is 6 characters! Why didn’t you use that?”. The simple answer there is that Hyper-V Generation 1 virtual machines (shown first above) use the same BIOS as we did for Virtual Server and Virtual PC – which was when this string was decided upon.