In a nutshell, it emulates a peecee on your Mac. Depending on which perversion you get, will determine which 'flavor' of windblows you will be offended by.
Don't expect it to allow you to play any of the newer games that the peecee's have (like anything that requires a video card/graphics accelerator). It MIGHT run the game, but it will be painfully slow (even with a top end G4 tower). VPC is also a memory hog (sucking down every MB you can toss it's way).
Personally, I fail to see the point of using it. Most software that I want to use, is available for the Mac (even some that I don't want to use like m$ orfice).
What are your reason(s) for wanting to know about VPC?? IF you ever do get it, get either the DOS version and get a copy of windblows from a peecee 'friend' or get the one that comes with win2k. Avoid both winME and winXP.
I have constructed a game pc at home that I use, which is a lot better at running pc stuff then VPC could ever be (at least until the G6 comes out ).
Virtual PC emulates the hardware of a PC. If you get a bare bones version and have a windows operating system on CD, you can install it through the emulated PC firmware. Rather than going thru this multi-hour process, you can also install Connectix packs available from Connectix Inc. to install OSs much faster and easier. But, Connectix does only use a graphics card emulator-it doesn't use your hardware graphics card but uses software. This means that it doesn't have 3D graphics support or acceleration, but 2D is fine in the software. If you are just running business apps, it should be fine. If you want gaming, most of the new games released for Windows also have Mac OS X counterparts. With the G4 and its great graphics support, it is very fast and have goot frame per second rate, and it is much faster than Windows because of the processor and its graphics integration.
I have Windows 98,Windows XP home and XP pro , but in VPC Windows 98 is alot faster in VPC than XP, but it crashes constantly, I don't know how M$ could release such a peice of crap....But ?If you need all out speed you could Get a copy of Windows 95
I have to use VPC to test some software I create & compile on my Mac. I have noted the following performances using the Windows System Info utility (accessable under Excel Help).
PB 400 (BK), 384M RAM VPC equivalent to a 100-150 Mhz Pentium
TiBook 667, 512M RAM VPC equivalent to a 550-650 Mhz Pentium
Both were with W2K and VPC set for 250M of memory.
Watching swap space in OS X even with 512M RAM VPC had a significant affect on swap. OS X swap is "on-demand" and starting up VPC, pretty much by itself caused 2-3 more 80 Meg swap files to be created. Clearly, you need to MAX out RAM for the best performance.