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Windows 7: XP Mode is slow--any way to improve

17 Nov 2009   #11

Windows 7 Ultimate x64

Just an update to this thread....I downloaded the new VMWare Player 3.0 software yesterday which now allows you to create VM's as well as play them back.

VMWare Player 3.0 times:
Time to boot Windows XP SP3 with 1 CPU and 512MB RAM: 24 seconds
Time to boot Windows XP SP3 and launch Open Office writer: 38 seconds

Sun VirtualBox 3.0.4 times:
Time to boot Windows XP SP3 with 1 CPU and 512MB RAM: 25 seconds
Time to boot Windows XP SP3 and launch Open Office writer: 35 seconds

Windows XP Mode:
Time to boot Windows XP SP3 with 1 CPU and 512MB RAM: 56 seconds
Time to boot Windows XP SP3 and launch Open Office writer: 66 seconds

So, as you can see above, the performance numbers from VMWare Player 3.0 are very close to Sun's VirtualBox and both Sun's product and the VMWare product are much faster than Windows XP Mode.

Also, the VMWare Player supports Unity mode...which allows you to launch applications installed on the VM local on the host (similar to the Published Application feature of XP Mode). Also, VMWare Player supports full 3d acceleration...including the Aero interface.

EDIT: And, if you have Windows XP Mode installed on your Win 7 Pro, Enterprise or Ultimate box..there is an option right within VMWare Player 3.0 under import that VM right into VMWare Player 3.0. Therefore, you can use the the provided XP Virtual Machine that Microsoft provided with a valid key, but in the VMWare Player 3.0 application.

My System SpecsSystem Spec
18 Nov 2009   #12

Linux CENTOS 7 / various Windows OS'es and servers

Hi there
I've just posted about the new vmware player and the unity feature -- this is more like how MS SHOULD have done it. - Decent graphics, decent local drive integration and PERFORMANCE.

The "Driverless Printer" feature is absolutely 100% spot on for people who need to print from the XP legacy application -- you shouldn't have to go through hoops to get such a basic piece of kit such as a printer to work.

Note also performance is more than just how long it takes to boot and start an application -- EXCEL 2007 with some macros ran nearly as quick as it did on the HOST machine.

BTW don't give your VM too much RAM - there ISN'T a reliable co-relation to what a REAL and a VIRTUAL machine's RAM requirements are. Unless you are running something like a SAP test ERP system with an Oracle database on the guest a 512MB RAM for XP will be more than sufficient for 99.9% of typical home user applications -- I assume you aren't going to do a huge amount of video editing or run photoshop CS4 with huge files on your XP VM.

My System SpecsSystem Spec
18 Nov 2009   #13

Windows 7 Ultimate x64

Yeah, VMWare Player 3.0 is my resident application for virtualization on my home machine for the time being. I don't do much printing from my thanks for posting about the print driver support...just another + for this great release from VMWare.

The greatest thing to happen to the virtualization space was competition and we the consumers are reaping the benefits of vmware, microsoft and sun all competing with each other in this space.
My System SpecsSystem Spec

18 Nov 2009   #14


Just my 2c worth...

When I went from the final beta of VPC to the "real thing" post Win7 release, the speed of the otherwise really SLOW VPC start up really did improve lots.


Unfortunately, the beta version of the VHD is not compatible with the actual release.

Still, considering I only NEED it for just the ONE app, it's good enough for me to use it (VPC that is) rather than VMWare.

I am however, keeping my VMWare server set up on another PC so I have my original VM "just in case" and lets face it, it's always good to have a back up!

My System SpecsSystem Spec
18 Nov 2009   #15

Windows 7 Ultimate x64

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by bjrichus View Post
When I went from the final beta of VPC to the "real thing" post Win7 release, the speed of the otherwise really SLOW VPC start up really did improve lots.
Fair enough...when I get some time to download this I will download it and give it a shot and see what improvements there are in terms of speed.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
18 Nov 2009   #16

Linux CENTOS 7 / various Windows OS'es and servers

Hi there
It IS a bit better but its still running about as fast as a one legged dog could run on a perfectly smooth ice pond.

I chucked it after about 10 mins -- graphics are also still a load of sh--e compared with vmware's newest workstation 7 or player.

My System SpecsSystem Spec
19 Nov 2009   #17

Windows 7 Ultimate x64

Yeah, I time tested the latest version of XP Mode on the same hardware today and compared that to VMWare Player 3.0 using the VMWare converter to convert the exact XP Mode VM into VMWare player.

Boot times for XP Mode to a usable desktop was 48 seconds. That's about 8 seconds faster than it used to be. And likely perfectly acceptable to most people who are experiencing virtualization for the first time. And it's super easy to install...will give them props there.

Boot times for VMWare Player 3.0 using the same XP image: 23 seconds.

So, as you can see, VMWare Player is 2x as fast starting up that VM and getting to a usable system. Plus, VMware Player doesn't require hardware virualization...and it doesn't require XP Pro, Enterprise or Ultimate.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
09 Feb 2010   #18

windows 7 64-bit

I've been having similar problems with very slow typing and browser performance in Windows XP mode. I got it because I have to run Cisco VPN to connect to work, and the VPN doesn't install on 64-bit. Other than that, I'm very happy with Windows 7 64-bit, in fact I love it. But the Microsoft XP mode was running pretty slow. I saw a previous posting on this blog from Sept. 2009, by huisinro, about a different virtual server called VMLite. I thought I'd give it a try, so I downloaded and installed. It works with my existing downloaded version of XP that came with XP mode, so that was free (with Windows 7 professional version). The bad news is that I will have to reinstall all the apps, it didn't recognize all the apps I had already installed on Microsoft XP mode - which I wouldn't have expected it to, since it seems to be running it's own VM server, or something like that. The good news is that this VMLite virtual machine just flies. I mean it's really fast, I almost think it's faster than the Windows 7 machine itself! Browser is fast, typing is fast, and the Cisco installed just fine (after I figured out that the install disk has to be in the "D" drive CD-ROM instead of the "E" drive, for some reason). This is really cool. Thanks huisinro!!! I never write on these blogs, I actually registered for this one just to pass this along. Another cool thing, I can access my "normal" C drive from the virtual machine.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
10 Feb 2010   #19

Linux CENTOS 7 / various Windows OS'es and servers

Hi there
I believe there's NO problem on re-activating an OLD copy of Windows XP (Not an OEM copy version) installed on a VM.

When activating just use the PHONE methode of activation.

Just say you've got a new machine -- you still need XP for some older legacy apps -- don't tell them you've installed on to a VM.

They will re-activate it -- no probs at all. It's quite legal as well as you are allowed to "transfer" the OS from one system to another one.

Before activating however decide on your VM configuration as significantly altering the amount of RAM allocated to your VM *might* cause a re-activation prompt.

Another advantage of course if you "clone" the VM it won't require further activation since it's an identical machine. - Under the EULA though you can't run more than one of these VM's concurrently on DIFFERENT machines -- the law is unclear (IMO - however any legal eagles here could clarify) about multiple VM's on the SAME machine however.

If you are testing at home I doubt if MS will send the "Blackboots" around however.

Some people have also managed posts on extracting the native XP system from the XP mode system. Note that when downloading you need to specify Windows Professional or higher - you won't be able to download if you specify Windows Home Premium.

Incidentally a VM running under VMWARE or VBOX will improve after 2 or 3 bootups of the GUEST OS'es -- both Host and VM will have optimised some features of the OS and it takes a while for the optimising algorithms to build up some history data on which to build the optimisation.

My System SpecsSystem Spec

 XP Mode is slow--any way to improve

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