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Many people never upgraded from Windows XP to Windows Vista. And one of the reasons was the inability to run some of their older XP programs. Well, there's a new and powerful feature that builds on virtual Windows XP that now lets you run XP applications and Windows 7 applications side-by-side. It's called XP mode. And it consists of the virtual PC based, virtual environment and a fully licensed copy of Windows XP with Service Pack 3. Now, it's not in the box with Windows 7.
But it will be made available as a free download from the Microsoft website and it will be available to users of Windows 7 Professional, Enterprise and Ultimate editions. Now, the key to XP mode is that it does not require you to run the virtual environment as a separate Windows desktop. Instead, as you install applications inside the virtual XP environment, they are published to the Windows 7 operating system as well. And this way you'll be able to run XP based applications, like Internet Explorer 6, for example, along side Windows 7 applications, on a single desktop.
So let's check it out. Now I've installed XP mode already, and you should know it's not just a simple download and run. First, you need to make sure you have the power needed to run XP mode. You can see I am at the Windows site here, on www.microsoft.com for Windows 7, specifically the page dedicated to Windows XP mode, and Windows Virtual PC. Now, as we scroll down, you can see we can download Windows XP mode from here. But before you download, you need to learn how to configure your BIOS settings to enable hardware virtualization on your PC.
And here's where you can go to see if your PC is powerful enough to run XP mode. So when we click that link and scroll down, you'll see there's a couple of utilities, one for Intel processors, so if your computer uses the Intel processor you can download Intel Processor Identification Utility, there is also one for AMD processors as well. So the Intel Processor Identification Utility which I've already downloaded, clicking this link, it feeds you prompts, you just answer the questions, you can accept all the defaults and you'll have this utility.
So I have got it running already. When you open it up, there are several tabs, the Frequency Test tab is selected by default and you can see the Expected Speed of the various components and the reports. But what's really important here is you go to CPU Technologies tab, and for Intel(R) Virtualization Technology you must see the word Yes, on the right-hand side. If you see a No, here, you will not be able to run XP mode, and you will need to upgrade your computer, your hardware to be able to do so, so I am going to close this up.
Now we are back to the website, and we are going to go back to the previous page. So once we have figured out whether or not we can run XP mode, if you can, there are some steps to follow now as we scroll down a little bit further. First step is to choose the appropriate installation, whether you're using a 32 bit or 64 bit installation. So for me it's 32 bit. The language I have selected here is English. Step 2 is to download Windows Virtual PC, the RC that you see at the end of Windows Virtual PC and XP mode stands for Release Candidate, at the date and time of this recording.
That's all that's available. Eventually RC will disappear. You'll have the full programs to download. So Step 2 is to click this button to Download Windows Virtual PC again. You will follow the prompts and it gets installed. Then once that is completed you go down to Step 3 and do the exact same thing for Windows XP mode. Clicking this button will prompt you for certain pieces of information. You can accept the defaults, like I did, and you'll have XP mode ready to use. So I am going to minimize Internet Explorer, back to my desktop and go to the Start button or Windows Orb.
And I am going to go to All Programs. Once you follow those steps, you'll see Windows Virtual PC. It's a folder appearing at the bottom of your list. When you click that you will see Windows Virtual PC as well as the one we want, Windows XP mode. Now the first time you select Windows XP mode, there is a setup program that will run, so you'll have to wait for it to pretty much install itself and be up and running. Then when you close it up, it actually just hibernates. So you can see I have already gone through this.
It opens up quickly. I have got a separate window now, which I can move around. I can resize it if I need to. You can see it's going to adjust itself and I am running Windows XP right here on my Windows 7 desktop. I have got the Start button down below. If I click Start, for example, and choose Internet Explorer. I am actually running Internet Explorer 6 in Windows XP right here. And if I go back down to my Windows 7 Taskbar and click the Explorer icon, you can see now I'm running Internet Explorer 8.
And I can switch back to XP mode. I've got both versions running simultaneously on the same desktop. And of course, if you have got any older XP programs, they can be installed right from the Start button inside the Windows XP mode window. So isn't that something? You can close that up, notice it's hibernating the virtual machine. So next time when you go to run XP mode it will open up quickly. I am also going to close up Internet Explorer 8, and there you have it, Windows XP mode.
No more excuses for avoiding the upgrade to Windows 7.
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