Will MS kill VPC?

mac-er

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Original poster
Apr 9, 2003
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Now that it will be possible to install Windows alongside OS X, do you think that will give MS an excuse to kill off VPC?

Some switchers will really be tempted to switch if a smart reseller installed Windows alongside OS X before selling the Mac.
 

mad jew

Moderator emeritus
Apr 3, 2004
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Adelaide, Australia
I doubt the resellers would be allowed to preinstall Windows too. I reckon there'll still be a market for some sort of VPC application just without the x86 emulation part. Of course, it's pretty far off and very difficult to predict because the actual decision won't happen until after the last PPC Mac goes to x86 IMO.

Whether or not Microsoft is the company to make the x86 VPC is another issue though, but I'm sure there'll be an equivalent.
 

Sun Baked

macrumors G5
May 19, 2002
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If MicroSoft kills it off, there is a good chance that somebody will quickly fill their niche.

There are quite a few people that have created virtual machines, and a virtual machine using the same instruction set has to be a magnitude of effort easier than the emulated machines.
 

atszyman

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Sep 16, 2003
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Why would they kill it off?

Every copy of Virtual PC sold nets them money, along with another copy of Windows sold. Just because you might be able to install Windows along side OS X on the Intel Macs does not mean everyone will want to deal with the hassle of doing so, especially if it increases performance greatly to run on the Intel processors.

I myself would prefer VPC if it runs at near native speed since I wouldn't have to reboot to use my Windows applications and can browse with Safari and use Mail while doing it.
 

mad jew

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Apr 3, 2004
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atszyman said:
Why would they kill it off?

Every copy of Virtual PC sold nets them money, along with another copy of Windows sold.

I don't think they'll kill it off, but remember that a program like VPC costs money to develop, support and maintain.
 

Macky-Mac

macrumors 68030
May 18, 2004
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they'll keep it on the market for a while.....but there wont be a new version of it
 

iMeowbot

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Aug 30, 2003
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Just remember the magic words: Developers! Developers! Developers! Developers! Developers! It's in Microsoft's interest to to what they can to keep developers coding to Windows APIs. VPC is their only real leverage to hinder the availability of native Mac software.
 

IJ Reilly

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Jul 16, 2002
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Microsoft bought VPC for other reasons than to sell this product to the Mac market. They were also interested in the underlying technology. I predict that VPC as we Mac users know it will be obsolete in a few years, as it seems likely that native Windows will run on the new Macs.
 

RacerX

macrumors 65832
Aug 2, 2004
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Well, unless Windows can boot a system without Bios, I see a need for Virtual PC well into the future... and with it able to access the processor directly, Microsoft will see it as an opportunity to sell more of their software.

:rolleyes:

The real question is if Microsoft will keep making Office for the Mac.

If you can run Office for Windows in Virtual PC at the same speed as a native version of Office for Mac, they could drop development of the Mac version in favor of an Office for Windows bundled with Virtual PC for Mac. :eek:
 

atszyman

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Sep 16, 2003
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IJ Reilly said:
Microsoft bought VPC for other reasons than to sell this product to the Mac market. They were also interested in the underlying technology. I predict that VPC as we Mac users know it will be obsolete in a few years, as it seems likely that native Windows will run on the new Macs.
VPC will only become obsolete if there exists a method to switch from OS X to Windows and back without rebooting your computer (preferably even keep applications running when not the focus OS but that is not required). If VPC runs at >60% native speed it will serve the purpose for people who have to use Windows apps from time to time but don't want to have to reboot to surf the web or check email (if I set up my next Mac to dual boot, Windows will only use the net for updates to avoid other problems).

Heck, they sell VPC for Windows so you can test applications on different Windows versions without worrying about crashing your main OS, so why not keep it for Mac? The price is set so they expect to make a profit, it may take money to develop and support but they will still be making money off of it. If they keep it they can convince many Mac users that they need it and make the money on VPC and Windows rather than just Windows.
 

7on

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Nov 9, 2003
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There will be a need - just like there is a need for VPC for Windows (running Windows inside Windows) like the previous poster said.

Schiller never said that Windows will be able to boot alongside OSX. He says that someone will figure out how to. He just said Apple doesn't plan on putting a "If BOOT = Windows THEN fail" scenario on there. And Apple especially won't be using BIOS which Windows needs to boot currently. Now if Apple uses EFI and Windows is upgraded to support EFI then it's possible - but the drivers that Apple uses only support their OS, meaning someone would have to write the drivers for Windows. It's a good idea - but won't take off. It'll probably exist in the same way Linux on xbox exists, and not for real practical use.
Then again it might not even be possible. Schiller doesn't know anything more that is happening behind Microsoft's doors than we do. He said that someone could possibly get it done. He did NOT say "Yes, we have worked a deal with Microsoft to provide them with drivers to our machines to make them boot Windows." Mac video cards will still lack DirectX optimization and the Mac Firmware (Whether OF, or EFI or something totally different) would have to be supported by Windows.

It is possible - but more along the lines like Linux on Xbox or PS2 possibility. And those took a while to get rolled out too.
 

mkrishnan

Moderator emeritus
Jan 9, 2004
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Grand Rapids, MI, USA
Don't Windows developers also frequently use VPC as a testbed environment on top of Windows itself?

But on the other hand, I'm guessing on a scale of difficulty from "just click the Intel binary button" to "freak out," that porting VPC to MacOS/Intel is closer to the freak out territory, since it ought to take a lot of advantage of not needing processor emulation....

I hope they sell it though...because Bochs and WINE are definitely going to hit MacOS/Intel. And rock on it. So if MS can continue to provide a more reliable / complete experience than those two, people will still buy it. In fact I'd think the market would still get even larger on Windows...I see myself using either Windows emulation or WINE when/if I get a Mac with an Intel processor, just for all those stupid stats packages that don't get ported or suck in portage.... :(
 

BornAgainMac

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Feb 4, 2004
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MS should Kill Windows

Microsoft should port all their Apps including Visio, Publisher, Access, Project, SQL Server, Visual Studio .NET, all their games to the Mac. Pocket PC and Mobile phones should be supported without dealing with third-party utilities.
Virtual PC will be optimized for Intel Macs and it will use include native video support for all Macs.

They need to focus on just building applications and dump their silly toy Windows operating system.
 

mkrishnan

Moderator emeritus
Jan 9, 2004
29,641
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Grand Rapids, MI, USA
BornAgainMac said:
They need to focus on just building applications and dump their silly toy Windows operating system.
Then they should kill *Windows* and not VPC. VPC would still be good for running Linux distros inside MacOS, wouldn't it? :D
 

IJ Reilly

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Jul 16, 2002
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atszyman said:
VPC will only become obsolete if there exists a method to switch from OS X to Windows and back without rebooting your computer (preferably even keep applications running when not the focus OS but that is not required). If VPC runs at >60% native speed it will serve the purpose for people who have to use Windows apps from time to time but don't want to have to reboot to surf the web or check email (if I set up my next Mac to dual boot, Windows will only use the net for updates to avoid other problems).

Heck, they sell VPC for Windows so you can test applications on different Windows versions without worrying about crashing your main OS, so why not keep it for Mac? The price is set so they expect to make a profit, it may take money to develop and support but they will still be making money off of it. If they keep it they can convince many Mac users that they need it and make the money on VPC and Windows rather than just Windows.
Understood, but my point is when OSX is running on x86, solving the problem of running it side-by-side with Windows (or any other PC OS) will be much simpler because emulating the processor will no longer be necessary.
 

IJ Reilly

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RacerX said:
Well, unless Windows can boot a system without Bios, I see a need for Virtual PC well into the future... and with it able to access the processor directly, Microsoft will see it as an opportunity to sell more of their software.
You mean the old PC-BIOS don't you? The Mactels will have a BIOS -- the only question is which one.

Microsoft could certainly sell more of their software if installing Windows on a Mactel ended up being a trivial exercise.
 

admanimal

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Apr 22, 2005
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IJ Reilly said:
You mean the old PC-BIOS don't you? The Mactels will have a BIOS -- the only question is which one.
jayscheuerle said:
Phoenix, I believe. Which of course means nothing to me!

Please don't assume that just because Open Firmware as we currently know it won't be on the Macs, or because the dev machines use a standard Phoenix BIOS, that the consumer Intel Macs will use a standard BIOS. Apple has not told anyone what they will use. They have many options.
 

IJ Reilly

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admanimal said:
Please don't assume that just because Open Firmware as we currently know it won't be on the Macs, or because the dev machines use a standard Phoenix BIOS, that the consumer Intel Macs will use a standard BIOS. Apple has not told anyone what they will use. They have many options.
I haven't assumed that at all. In fact I'd be shocked if Apple used the retrograde PC-BIOS in any of its cloned forms (of which Phoenix is one) in the final Mactel product.

I don't know how many options Apple actually has, but the smart money is on ESA.