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Windows 7: Windows XP Guest as normal VM.

10 Dec 2009   #1
yoinkster

Windows 7
 
 
Windows XP Guest as normal VM.

Hey guys,

I have recently bought two new workstations that have Windows 7 Professional on them and they run perfectly. With our old workstations, we used to run XP Professional as a host and XP Professional as a guest OS (to give our users more chance to multi-task, one of our applications can only use one CPU so it was a good shout to make a VM to use another CPU, anyway ...) it worked really well, neither host nor guest had slow downs and both ran things like Office suits and database applications.

Now we are using Windows 7, I have installed XP Mode and Windows Virtual PC and have created a new Virtual Machine that runs XP - ie, I'm NOT using XP mode as I don't think it'll be up being used a proper machine - but it runs terribly slow to the point where it's pointless having it.

The host machines are pretty high spec, Intel Xeon E5506 quad-core 2.13GHz, 4GB DDR3 RAM, 512MB nVidia Quadro FX580 graphics card so I don't really understand why an XP VM would run so slow. I've given it 2GB of RAM and a CPU to use, is this slowdown by design or have I missed something?

Thanks for the help,
Adam.


My System SpecsSystem Spec
.
10 Dec 2009   #2
Kari

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

 

Hello Yoinkster, welcome to the Seven Forums.

This helps with all installed virtual machines, not only with XP:
  • Turn off / Hibernate all running virtual machines
  • Open C:\Users\Your_Username\AppData\Local\Microsoft\Windows Virtual PC\Options.xml with Notepad
  • Add this somewhere between the Preferences tags:
    • <virtual_machines>
      <enable_idle_thread type="boolean">true</enable_idle_thread>
      </virtual_machines><br/>
  • Save the file
This allows your virtual machine to use more of the hosts resources, thus increasing the performance. A very clear difference!

In addition you could set the virtual machine's performance options to best performance (in XP, right click My Computer in Start Menu, choose Properties > Advanced > Performance.

Kari
My System SpecsSystem Spec
11 Dec 2009   #3
HughShaw

Windows 7 Professional (x64)
 
 

Hmm...I wish I could have tried this before I erased XP Mode.

Why didn't you tell us sooner, Kari?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
.

11 Dec 2009   #4
yoinkster

Windows 7
 
 

Hi Kari,

thanks for the suggestion, I have put those lines into the options.xml file but it doesn't seem to have made any discernible difference to the performance of my XP VM. My applications still take years to run on the guest that open in seconds on the host yet if you look at processes etc running on the guest, it's bearly touched the available CPU and memory allocations. Should XP VMs run perfectly smoothly or am I better trying a Vista VM instead?

TIA,
Adam.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
11 Dec 2009   #5
Kari

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

 

I have no performance issues using XP Mode after modifying the options.xml and setting performance options to best performance. I am completely happy with my XP Mode.

You could try installing Sun VirtualBox. It's free, it allows also 64-bit quests (Virtual PC only 32-bit) and according to some users it is faster.

Kari
My System SpecsSystem Spec
11 Dec 2009   #6
yoinkster

Windows 7
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Kari View Post
I have no performance issues using XP Mode after modifying the options.xml and setting performance options to best performance. I am completely happy with my XP Mode.

You could try installing Sun VirtualBox. It's free, it allows also 64-bit quests (Virtual PC only 32-bit) and according to some users it is faster.

Kari

I'm not using XP Mode, I'm using a fully fledged, bona fide Virtual Machine that I have decided to install XP on as I want a proper machine that can run all the time (we all have dual monitors here) and be used as though we have two workstations on our desks. XP Mode, as I understand it - feel free to correct me, is just for getting a few legacy apps running and is designed more to help users integrate XP compatability into Windows 7. This is not what I want to achieve, I used to have an XP host machine running an XP guest machine and they were both used as though they were physical machines. It is this that I want to achieve with Windows 7 but the XP Virtual Machine runs like a one-legged dog.

I'll try some different VM software and see if that makes any difference if we can't think of anything else here. Using different VM software sounds like it would waste some of my licenses so I'd rather not go down this route straight away.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
11 Dec 2009   #7
jimbo45

Linux CENTOS 7 / various Windows OS'es and servers
 
 

Hi

VMWARE PLAYER version 3 is a good FREE bet as well as VIRTUAL SERVER from vmware.
For running XP virtual machines you don't have to worry about 3D and Aero support so Vmware Virtual server IMO would be the best option for what you want to do.

VMWARE Workstation is good but costs quite a bit of money (around 150 USD or so).

Incidentally you can convert Virtual PC VHD's to vmware format - otherwise just re-install XP as a Guest machine again.

Vmware software runs just fine on my machines.

(Note Cloning an XP machine won't call for re-activation since it's an identical clone of what it was cloned from -- however not quite sure what the EULA says on that).

Using vmware Virtual server means that your Guest VM's can run as a background process - other users can LOG ON to the VM without being logged on to the Host.

Can be useful as you don't even have to enable any users on the HOST machine.

Cheers
jimbo
My System SpecsSystem Spec
19 Mar 2010   #8
NoN

Windows 7 Professional SP1 - x64 [Non-UEFI Boot]
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Kari View Post
Hello Yoinkster, welcome to the Seven Forums.

This helps with all installed virtual machines, not only with XP:

  • Turn off / Hibernate all running virtual machines
  • Open C:\Users\Your_Username\AppData\Local\Microsoft\Windows Virtual PC\Options.xml with Notepad
  • Add this somewhere between the Preferences tags:
    • <virtual_machines>

    • <enable_idle_thread type="boolean">true</enable_idle_thread>
      </virtual_machines><br/>
  • Save the file
This allows your virtual machine to use more of the hosts resources, thus increasing the performance. A very clear difference!

In addition you could set the virtual machine's performance options to best performance (in XP, right click My Computer in Start Menu, choose Properties > Advanced > Performance.

Kari
Thanks Kari,

it is an old thread but looks appropriate to me as i've just instal Xp Mode/Virtual PC today after the new MS Patch to enable that XP Mode for non V-T Processor!
My System SpecsSystem Spec
19 Mar 2010   #9
pparks1

Windows 7 Ultimate x64
 
 

I use VM's extensively and XP Mode is and always has been terribly slow compared to the competing products from Sun and VMWare. Even with the performance tweaks its' substantially different for me.

For this reason, I don't use XP mode, but rather VMWare Player 3 is my personal app of choice and has served me very well.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
19 Mar 2010   #10
NoN

Windows 7 Professional SP1 - x64 [Non-UEFI Boot]
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Kari View Post
Hello Yoinkster, welcome to the Seven Forums.

This helps with all installed virtual machines, not only with XP:

  • Turn off / Hibernate all running virtual machines
  • Open C:\Users\Your_Username\AppData\Local\Microsoft\Windows Virtual PC\Options.xml with Notepad
  • Add this somewhere between the Preferences tags:
    • <virtual_machines>

    • <enable_idle_thread type="boolean">true</enable_idle_thread>
      </virtual_machines><br/>
  • Save the file
This allows your virtual machine to use more of the hosts resources, thus increasing the performance. A very clear difference!

In addition you could set the virtual machine's performance options to best performance (in XP, right click My Computer in Start Menu, choose Properties > Advanced > Performance.

Kari
That have work fine for me...!!

The rep doesn't work at the moment...it 'll come sooner or later
My System SpecsSystem Spec
Reply

 Windows XP Guest as normal VM.




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