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    XP Mode In Windows 7:Details With Screenshot

    One of the biggest problems to plague Windows Vista was its incompatibility with older software that ran perfectly under Windows XP. With Windows 7 Microsoft have greatly increased the compatibility of older software but there will still be problems, especially with bespoke applications used in business.This is unlike previous versions of windows that simply had a compatibility check box. This will be a fully functional Virtual machine with XP running inside of it. This is where XP Mode comes in.

    XP Mode, currently in beta, adds a fully licensed copy of Windows XP Professional that runs in a virtual machine on your desktop. The clear difference between XP Mode though and Microsoft Virtual PC on which it is based, is that any applications installed in it, not only show up in their own windows on your Windows 7 desktop, but that they also show up in your Windows 7 Start Menu.
    This is a brilliant move on Microsoft’s part. This means that with every Windows 7 license you purchase, you get Windows XP along with it. I think most businesses will find justifying the purchase much easier. Why? Because now there will be a significantly lower number of compatibility issues.

    The much talked about “secret feature” of Windows 7, XP Mode, is in RC (Release Candidate) and available to download for all who want to try it out.
    As quoted from The Windows Blog we see that-
    “Windows XP Mode is specially designed for small and medium-sized businesses to help ease the migration process to Windows 7 by providing additional compatibility for their older productivity applications. Windows XP Mode provides what we like to call that “last mile” compatibility technology for those cases when a Windows XP productivity application isn’t compatible with Windows 7.”

    And Another Expert Paul Thurrott provides an in depth description of the feature: Based on feedback Microsoft got from the beta, they have added lots of new features. Here are some of the new features included in the RC:
    XP Mode consists of the Virtual PC-based virtual environment and a fully licensed copy of Windows XP with Service Pack 3 (SP3). It will be made available, for free, to users of Windows 7 Professional, Enterprise, and Ultimate editions via a download from the Microsoft web site. (That is, it will not be included in the box with Windows 7, but is considered an out-of-band update, like Windows Live Essentials.) XPM works much like today’s Virtual PC products, but with one important exception: As with the enterprise-based MED-V (Microsoft Enterprise Desktop Virtualization) product, XPM 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 host (Windows 7) OS as well. (With shortcuts placed in the Start Menu.) That way, users can run Windows XP-based applications (like IE 6) alongside Windows 7 applications under a single desktop.

    You can now attach USB devices to Windows XP Mode applications directly from the Windows 7 task-bar. This means your USB devices, such as printers and flash drives, are available to applications running in Windows XP Mode, without the need to go into full screen mode.
    You can now access Windows XP Mode applications with a “jump-list”. Right click on the Windows XP Mode applications from the Windows 7 task bar to select and open most recently used files.
    You now have the flexibility of customizing where Windows XP Mode differencing disk files are stored.
    So far, everything’s great. What could possibly go wrong here you ask? Sadly, there is something and it’s a biggie.

    XP Mode doesn’t, sadly, inherit security from its host operating system, Windows 7. This means that it can’t take advantage of any anti-virus software you have installed. You will need to install separate anti-virus software in the virtual machine.
    You can now disable drive sharing between Windows XP Mode and Windows 7 if you do not need that feature.

    The initial setup now includes a new user tutorial about how to use Windows XP Mode.
    In order to run the XP Mode RC properly, You must have either RC (7100) or RTM (7600) version of Windows 7 Professional, Ultimate or Enterprise. Also you must have 1 GB of RAM, 15 GB of available disk space, and a processor capable of hardware virtualization with AMD-V or Intel VT turned on in the BIOS.

    The download consists of a 5 MB Virtual PC file and a 450 MB copy of Windows XP Service Pack 3. Try it for yourself here.
    Windows Virtual PC download

    More Details:
    Windows XP Mode allows Windows 7 users to run Windows XP compatible applications in Windows 7. The main different between the Windows XP Mode and other software virtualization applications like Sun’s VirtualBox is that XP Mode seamlessly integrates into Windows 7. Microsoft is aiming at day to day users who need to run XP compatible software programs that do not work correctly in either Windows Vista or Windows 7 natively.
    A typical virtual environment runs from its own virtual hard drive space. The Windows XP Mode on the other hand will share the hard drive and permissions with Windows 7 including:
    * Clipboard sharing, which enables you to cut, copy, and paste data between the host Windows 7 desktop and the virtual machine
    * Printer sharing between the Windows 7 desktop and the virtual Windows environment
    * Drive sharing, which provides easy access to all host data from within the virtual machine
    * Folder integration between operating environments

    Here is a quick overview on how to install Windows XP Mode in Windows 7.
    The requirements to run Windows XP Mode according to Microsoft:
    * 1 GHz 32bit or 64bit processor or better
    * CPU w/ AMD-VTM or IntelĂ‚® VT features turned on
    * 2 GB of memory recommended
    * Additional 15GB of hard disk space per virtual Windows environment recommended

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