Windows 7 XP Mode with Parallels or Fusion?

Discussion in 'Mac Apps and Mac App Store' started by Meriana, Oct 31, 2009.

  1. Meriana macrumors member

    Aug 31, 2009
    Anyone tried to boot the Windows 7 XP Mode withi Parallels or VM Ware Fusion? Would be interesting to know if that works?
  2. Winni macrumors 68040


    Oct 15, 2008
    Besides that simulations with simulations are always a nice idea for a movie, I just don't get it why anyone would want to run a VM within a VM. But technically there is absolutely no reason why this shouldn't work as long as your host computer has sufficient resources.
  3. VPrime macrumors 68000


    Dec 19, 2008
    London Ontario
    With this being said.... If you already have VM software, why not just install an XP VM outside of 7? It would be easier to manage in OSX (for example a space for 7, a space for XP, and a space for you osx stuff)
  4. Mycatisbigfoot macrumors regular

    Jun 22, 2009
    i would try it for a laugh, but whats the point? just run xp in its own virtual box. but try it see if its fun having to open a virtual macheen to get to a virtual macheen. I do it in vista to get to dos, XD
  5. cfbros macrumors newbie

    Jun 29, 2009
    the answer for Parallels 5 is 'NO'..

    Log Name: Microsoft-Windows-Virtual PC/Admin
    Source: Microsoft-Windows-Virtual PC
    Date: 11/18/2009 1:14:39 PM
    Event ID: 42
    Task Category: None
    Level: Error
    User: win_7_para-PC\win_7_para
    Computer: win_7_para-PC
    Virtual PC is incompatible with the host processor in this machine. Virtual PC requires at least a Pentium II (or equivalent) processor.
    Event Xml:
    <Event xmlns="">
    <Provider Name="Microsoft-Windows-Virtual PC" Guid="{A759B4BE-484C-414D-A97D-961D33C31A3D}" />
    <TimeCreated SystemTime="2009-11-18T18:14:39.706054600Z" />
    <Correlation />
    <Execution ProcessID="204" ThreadID="2436" />
    <Channel>Microsoft-Windows-Virtual PC/Admin</Channel>
    <Security UserID="S-1-5-21-2521451348-1185731560-1657780326-1000" />
  6. jtara macrumors 68000

    Mar 23, 2009
    I agree: Why? Seems kinda silly.

    I'd suggest installing 32-bit XP and 64-bit Windows 7, as I have done under VMWare Fusion. Personally, I wouldn't bother with Boot Camp, unless you have something that just won't run in a VM.

    I'd really urge people to go with the 64-bit Windows 7. It runs much faster than the 32-bit (because VMWare can use the VT extensions, which it can't for 32-bit OSs), and the "missing 64 bit drivers" issue is a non-issue when running in a VM, and since the "hardware" is all virtual, VMWare provides all the necessary drivers. So, no missing drivers for your "hardware".

    32-bit XP for maximum compatibility, and because that's what most people have anyway.

    Suggestion: the Windows 7 Family Pack is a great deal - 3 upgrade licences to Windows 7 Home Premium for $149, and it comes with both 32-bit and 64-bit media. Stores are all out of stock, but you can order directly from Microsoft, and it will arrive in a couple of days.

    Installation hint: I first did a clean install of XP into a VM, brought it up to date, etc. Made a backup just in case. Now, you don't want to try to "upgrade" that VM. Instead, install Windows 7 into a new VM, but before installing, attach the XP virtual disk as a second hard disk (select the option to use it in place, rather than copy - make sure your XP VM is shut down before you do this). Do a "custom" install, and choose your empty partition from the new VM to install into. Windows will see the XP partition to verify that you qualify for the upgrade, and it will install with no trouble. There's a lot of misinformation about the 64-bit SCSI driver - ignore it, assuming you have VMWare 3.0 - it's all about the previous version. As long as you select Window 7, 64-bit from the menu, it will just work.

    Loads of misinformation on the net about the "upgrade" process, as well. It doesn't have to "install over" XP, which is the terminology used in misinformed article after misinformed article. It simply needs to find an attached disk (internal, USB, virtual) with an installed and activated copy of XP or Vista when you do a "custom install" and it will install in one step, with no need for a "double install" or any registry nonsense.

    Oh, yea, remember to activate. I didn't get prompted to do so. Just find Activate in the start menu. Once you've done so, you can shut down the VM and detach the XP virtual drive.

    Technically, you then have to remove your XP VM, unless you have an additional unused license. (As I do.) You consumed the XP license when you upgraded. I guess that would be the only advantage of running the built-in XP VM in Windows 7.

    I've read horror stories about speed. I haven't found that to be the case - it is quite zippy on my late-2008 aluminum Macbook with 4GB RAM. I've read some comments that Windows 7 actually runs quite a bit slower (in VMWare) when installed in a BootCamp partition.

    One final hint: first make an ISO image of the DVD. The install will go much faster. Total installation time was about 20 minutes.

    FWIW I also have Kubuntu 9.10 (64-bit, of course) installed in a VM with similarly satisfactory results.

    Ugh, sorry, this probably should be a new thread. Maybe I'll do that tonight.
  7. solok macrumors newbie

    Apr 3, 2010
    Wish I would have known

    At my previous job I used VMware to run XP specifically so I could test multiple versions of IE. VM was nothing but clunky... Now I'm branching out on my own as a freelancer and decided to go with Parallels. I needed to run XP apps so I was informed that Windows7 Professional would be the choice to get - not the Home edition... I was told that it was just an XP Mode, not another virtual machine within a virtual machine. So I bought it, saw that XP could only run in the Windows VM, tried installing it without success... which led me to this forum.

    So why wouldn't someone want to just install XP on its own machine and not want to just have it work as part of Windows 7? Well duh, cuz i just dropped almost $300 bucks on the freaking thing - expecting it to work! I'm not migrating from XP. I have to do a full install. Now I need to buy XP... WTF:mad:
  8. Lann macrumors member

    Feb 8, 2011
    has anyone tried this on the 2011 Macbook Pro's? does it still not work with Parallels?
  9. dyn macrumors 68030

    Aug 8, 2009
    It didn't work in 2009, it doesn't work in 2011 and it also will not work in any other year in the future. The XP mode requires VT-x support which can not be virtualised by any virtualisation software (just not technically possible to do so). You need a workaround: use XP in a new vm or if you must, use VMware Player. VMware Player will use binary translation which doesn't require VT-x. This will only allow virtualisation of 32 bit operating systems such as XP. This is also a problem people run into when to run ESXi in a vm (you can not run 64 bit OS' on ESXi in this case, only 32 bit because 64 bit requires VT-x).

    To summarise:
    1. Create a new vm for Windows XP.
    2. Use VMware Player in the Windows 7 vm and import the XP vm Microsoft allows you to download for the use of XP Mode.
  10. roadbloc macrumors G3


    Aug 24, 2009
    Here's an idea. Instead of having a virtual machine within a virtual machine, why not just install xp in your virtual machine software?
  11. Lann macrumors member

    Feb 8, 2011
    Ok so it cant be done. bummer.

    i only wanted the option of being able to play on older PC games that wont work on Windows 7, unless there is another option i dont know about?
  12. dyn macrumors 68030

    Aug 8, 2009
    Like we already told you: create a new vm for those with the appropriate operating system. This is the best option for performance anyway (if you stick to vm's).
  13. aclewis182 macrumors newbie

    Mar 22, 2011
    I must say you are incorrect. It is common practice at my engineering firm to run a VM inside of a VM. It serves an excellent way to guarantee isolation between build environments.

    I will agree that it is no where close to what you'd want for gaming or other CPU / graphics intensive applications, but for command line tools or other light weight applications it works great.

    I am running a 2011 MBP i7 with 8 gigs of RAM and have Lion running Windows 7 Pro via Parallels 7 and it has Win XP Mode's VM running. See link below for a picture / VM stats
  14. bizint macrumors newbie

    Dec 8, 2011
    Hi aclewis182, thats fascinating...I have a new macbook air running parallels (amazing!) but I have an old AutoCAD program that wont run in 7 and really need to get it going in XP....(updating will cost thousands!)...if you could let me know how to run xp that would be great. I've tried but it doesnt want to play ball...I can install windows xp mode (step 2) in my windows ultimate...but when I try to install the next step 3 - virtual says the update isnt applicable for the computer...?

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