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Windows 7: W7 Virtual PC XP Mode Directories Reversed

23 Jul 2010   #1

Windows 7 64 bit with Virtual PC XP Mode
W7 Virtual PC XP Mode Directories Reversed


I just installed Windows 7, 64-bit on a new PC, and then downloaded and installed Virtual PC and XP mode from the MS website. I proceeded to install Visual Studio 6 and some other old XP applications in the XP mode window.

This seemed to go OK, but when I tried to use my apps in XP mode, I noticed that my VB6 programs were having trouble finding and opening files.

Then I noticed that if I open Windows Explorer or the Command Prompt in W7, I can only see directories and files that are defined in XP mode. If I open CMD in XP mode, I can only see files and directories that are defined in W7. If I open WE in XP mode, I can see both XP mode and W7 files and directories.

What went wrong? How did my files and directories get reversed?

Thanks in advance to anyone who can help me with this.

My System SpecsSystem Spec
23 Jul 2010   #2

windows 7

I think this is to with the mode you are running.

Microsoft XP Mode has two modes, the desktop mode and the virtual application mode. When you start a vm app from Windows 7 host Start menu, you are running the app in virtual application mode. This vm app redirects to your host's special folders. e.g., when you open My Documents from the app, you will see your Windows 7's Documents folder. My Desktop also redirects to host desktop.

This may have caused your issues.

You can switch to Desktop mode, start the vm first, then run apps from XP vm. Your host drive, C:\, D:\ can be accessed from the vm.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
10 Aug 2010   #3

Windows 7 64 bit with Virtual PC XP Mode

Thanks. I think I am now over this hurdle and starting to straddle the next one.

I actually managed to confuse things even further by reloading Windows 7 32 bit and 64 bit several times before i tried to use XP mode, in an effort to find get my existing applications like VB6 to work.

Part of my confusion was due to the fact that some of my personal directories were preserved from one Windows 7 installation to the next, even though I understood that Windows would delete all of my existing directories each time it was reinstalled.

Copies of directories that I had installed in XP mode were also on the host drive, having been carried forward from a previous installation, so I thought I was looking at XP mode directories when I was actually looking at the host.

Moving on, I am still having problems, because of what appear to be limitations of XP mode such as:

1) XP mode doesn't support dual monitors.

2) XP mode applications run on the host can span two monitors, but the maximum screen width available for any XP application is only about 3/4 of the combined width of my two new 30-in. monitors, so I still can't utilize all of my expensive screen real estate. XP applications think that the edge of my 2nd monitor is in the middle of the monitor.

3) Files and directories defined in XP mode are not visible from the host, so I have to load all of my files in host directories, if I want to take advantage of Windows 7 and access them with applications like the latest versions of Word and Excel, which are running on the host.

Other than going to something like VMware Workstation, is there any other way to address these issues? I would rather stick with an all Microsoft solution.

Thanks again for you help.

My System SpecsSystem Spec

10 Aug 2010   #4
Night Hawk

W7 Ultimate x64/W10 Pro x64 dual boot main build-remote pc W10 Pro x64 Insider Preview/W7 Pro x64

Welcome to the Seven Forums! Dadobob

huisinro was quite correct in that you are running the XP Mode in a windowed environment. When setting the screen resolution options for the XP Mode itself the actual window will grow in size when raised up. Due to the limited amount of virtual video memory at a 128mb max you won't be able to see full access to any twin display setup but are limited on stretching the open window only so far.

The XP Mode offers one thing not really found on other VM program with the integrated component feature seen there. When looking in Windows Explorer or MyComputer in the XP Mode you will see two drives not one with the C drive letter in the left column while the host drive will have another when looking on the right pane in any explorer window. Note how that is in the image attached below.

For changing most settings at any time refer to the guide for this. Windows Virtual PC - Change Virtual Machine Settings

Attached Thumbnails
W7 Virtual PC XP Mode Directories Reversed-integrated-components-access-host-drives.jpg  
My System SpecsSystem Spec

 W7 Virtual PC XP Mode Directories Reversed

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