Windows Thin PC (Windows 7)

Lastic

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The previous PowerPC Winter Challenge I got introduced to Windows FLP by @gavinstubbs09 in his post here
https://forums.macrumors.com/threads/inaugural-winter-powerpc-challenge-january-1-7-2017.2021951/page-9#post-24145467
or even more in details on his excellent website
https://powerpccentre.wordpress.com/2017/01/02/ppcc-2017-day-2/

Win FLP is a lightweight version of Windows XP with lower system requirements, created by Microsoft so customers with older hardware could switch to XP .

Since I now own a Dual 2.3Ghz G5 and 12 GB RAM , I was messing around with Windows 7 QEMU VM's and stumbled upon this, Windows Thin PC . It's a 32 bit stripped down version of Windows 7 .

Wikipedia https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Windows_Thin_PC

The ISO download from Microsoft
http://download.microsoft.com/download/C/D/7/CD789C98-6C1A-43D6-87E9-F7FDE3806950/ThinPC_110415_EVAL_x86fre.iso

System Requirements and a bit of overview https://blogs.technet.microsoft.com/mniehaus/2011/09/08/windows-thin-pc-another-flavor-of-windows-7/

I've installed it using qemu , with 1300 MB RAM and 2 CPU's , install took almost 2 hours and gave me a 3 GB Harddisk image .

I then used qemu-img convert -O vpc <input.qcow2 file> <output.vpc file> to convert it , then imported it on my PB G4 in Virtual PC 7 with 512 MB RAM and it runs, not fast but it does respond, not like clicking somewhere and wondering wether you did click something.

It's more suited as a qemu VM since you can give it dual processors or 1 Gb RAM there, I'm installing all updates to it and can upload a qcow2 and vpc7 image with a default user and password.

Once my Xserve DP G4 finished installing Xcode,Macports,qemu and Virtual PC 7 I will have a try on it also since it has 2 G4's , 2 GB RAM and can run VPC7.
 

eyoungren

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Aug 31, 2011
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Since I now own a Dual 2.3Ghz G5 and 12 GB RAM , I was messing around with Windows 7 QEMU VM's and stumbled upon this, Windows Thin PC . It's a 32 bit stripped down version of Windows 7 .

Wikipedia https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Windows_Thin_PC

The ISO download from Microsoft
http://download.microsoft.com/download/C/D/7/CD789C98-6C1A-43D6-87E9-F7FDE3806950/ThinPC_110415_EVAL_x86fre.iso

System Requirements and a bit of overview https://blogs.technet.microsoft.com/mniehaus/2011/09/08/windows-thin-pc-another-flavor-of-windows-7/
Thank you!

I'm taking the download of this on my MP right now. Going to transfer it to my Quad and play around with VPC 7 tonight.
 

weckart

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Nov 7, 2004
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Thanks. I have VPC7 with XP that came with Office 2004 and it runs dog slow on my late 2005 G5. Let’s see what Qemu plus this do in comparison.
 

Lastic

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I'm currently running an fresh installed Win ThinPC VM on my MBp via qemu-system-i386 -m 1300M -boot c -hda thinpc.qcow2 -net nic,model=e1000 (gigabit ethernet adapter) -net user (DHCP and NAT) -smp cpus=2 (Dual Processor) -vga cirrus (this give correct colors instead of std) in order to complete all the Windows Updates (106 in total up to now) and once it has finished I will create a general user account, convert it also to a VPC7 image and upload it to DropBox.
 

MagicBoy

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WinFLP was originally intended to turn old desktops into Thin Clients for Enterprise. It's got a few XP era things removed, the main advantage is the disk footprint is 1GB instead of about 3GB.

It's not magically loads quicker in use, perhaps 10% at best.
 

weckart

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You have to futz with the ram on VPC 7. There's a sweet spot around 450mb of ram or so. Too much or too little and it chokes. Really non-intuitive but that's the way it works.
Yes. I think even MS suggested 512MB as a max. Still could do with a mobility scooter.
 
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Orizence

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WinFLP was originally intended to turn old desktops into Thin Clients for Enterprise. It's got a few XP era things removed, the main advantage is the disk footprint is 1GB instead of about 3GB.

It's not magically loads quicker in use, perhaps 10% at best.
You're absolutely right, its not much faster at all. There are still people who truly believe that Win Server is faster than their consumer counterparts, but thats really not the case, they're the same OS. Its the exact same with this
 

gavinstubbs09

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I had good luck with WinFLP being quick on the laptop I had years and years ago compared to XP Pro SP2. Personally I think it's faster. But I do agree that WinServer counterparts are not any faster and "WinServer20XXWorkstation" is kind of pointless since you can do everything on a normal edition of windows outside of active directory servers and a few other things.

I tried to use QEMU in the past but it gave me issues that I don't recall and VPC anything on PPC was slow. Thin PC is good too but at this point in my life all of my "Windows" stuff has second gen i-series processors or newer that run Win10 so I don't have to emulate anything unless I want to try it out lol
 

weckart

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More to the point, ThinPC is crippled as a general OS compared with FLP from what I can read. If all you want to do is surf the web then ThinPC might be an ok option otherwise it seems that there is little more that you can do with it.
 

MagicBoy

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I won't disagree with that. The Windows 6.1 line (7/2008R2) are much more modular so it's easier to maintain/remove modules which is probably why they stripped it back further to save on flash storage on Thin Clients. Back in the mists of time I've deployed machines at work with WinFLP and Thin PC for the purposes for which it was intended... which for most companies is logging into an RDS or Citrix farm. It needs a relatively up to date and secure browser to get access to the logon pages, and the client software for your VDI/App virtualisation solution and that's about it for most use cases.

SuperFetch, .NET etc are all unnecessary baggage that aren't required for that task.

Last time I used Server as a Workstation was for Hyper-V. That's been included in the base OS since Windows 8 Pro so there's no real need now. Plus with Hyper-V you can run a small dedicated server for whatever reason on your workstation now.

Someone recently tested the Server is quicker than Workstation myth on YouTube and debunked it again. Think it was Linus.
 

Lastic

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Well my 2 cents , I installed all the Windows updates the past day and the qcow2 image blew up to 9 GB , running it in VPC7 the interface is snappy but the emulated hardware is too slow for it to be usable.

It is a bit more usable using qemu-system-i386 on the G5.

Apart from that stubborn as I am , I continued on OS X 10.5.8 on the G5 and the Xserve G4 and tried to use and updated Macports 2.4.2 to install the newly released qemu 2.10.1 but it cannot find the file which needs to be an tar.bz2 but seems to be a tar.xz , so bunzip and xz compress et voila (distfiles seem to be screwed) but the build fails.

Thus tried to compile qemu 2.10.1 from source on OS X 10.5.8 but that fails at make , some issue with gcc varasm.c.
So .. reinstalled qemu 2.2.0 this time also with target_ppc to have ppc,ppc46 emulation and currently trying to install a ppc64 Fedora 25 Server VM on the G5.
 

eyoungren

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Installed…Virtual PC 7.

Of course, I had to install the generic Intel Ethernet driver that VPC 7 does not install for Win 7 VMs before I could activate.

Just curious about this 90 day Windows Embedded license that it installed with?

Do I have to 'reactivate' every 90 days or am I expected to enter a different serial number?

I don't see a point in this thin client if using a different serial changes things.

Virtual PC.png
 

weckart

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Nov 7, 2004
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The received wisdom is that Connectix VPC 5 is the fastest VPC host under both OS9 and OSX. VPC6 added MS branding and some bloat whilst 7 really slowed things down.
Not sure how good XP support is in VPC5 as that was contemporaneous with Win98/ME and Win2k. Might be worth a try if Qemu doesn’t work out.
 
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tdbmoss

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Do I have to 'reactivate' every 90 days or am I expected to enter a different serial number?
If it is one you downloaded free of charge from Microsoft it will be a free time-limited evaluation, you would need to enter a non-evaluation serial and activate it in order to use it perpetually (same OS, just no time limit) - same as with any evaluation versus full version of Windows.

FLP, ThinPC etc licences are only available to enterprise users, you can't buy them at retail or bundled with a new PC - you can also get them as part of some of Microsoft's subscriptions aimed at IT professionals or developers, I have a key for ThinPC from my old TechNet subscription (which are no longer available), you may still be able to get them via other types of subscriptions like MSDN or Partner Action Pack, you would need to check though.

I'd be surprised if ThinPC or FLP are noticeably faster than the regular versions on which they are based, especially if you have disabled the services etc in the regular versions that are disabled by default or removed in the stripped-out versions - so you are probably better off using a regular version, for which a perpetual licence key is much more easily obtainable. 7 was extremely slow when I tried it in VPC 7 on my G5 though, I think XP is the newest version that is practical to use emulated on PowerPC
 
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AphoticD

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The received wisdom is that Connectix VPC 5 is the fastest VPC host under both OS9 and OSX. VPC6 added MS branding and some bloat whilst 7 really slowed things down.
Not sure how good XP support is in VPC5 as that was contemporaneous with Win98/ME and Win2k. Might be worth a try if Qemu doesn’t work out.
There's in interesting summary of VPC's history (and links to some of the updates, etc) here:
https://winworldpc.com/product/virtual-pc/7x

It looks like VPC7 was the only version to support the G5. But did it take advantage of multiple processors? I can't recall, and the 512MB RAM limit was restrictive considering these machines could handle 16GB.

I tried VPC5 running on my Sawtooth G4 500Mhz in Tiger and it boots Win98 pretty fast, but anything XP or later is basically unusable. A faster system like an MDD would see real gains, but again, it's unlikely to make use of more than one CPU.

I have ThinPC installing on the G5 DC 2.3Ghz in QEMU 2.2.0 (via Macports) with i386 emulation, 1GB RAM and dual-processor support (-smp cpus=2). It distributed the installation load across both CPUs pretty well and so far so good.. I'm up to my first boot now.

ThinPC-QEMU-Leopard.jpg
 
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Dronecatcher

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The fastest way to Windows is OS9/VPC4 - unfortunately, support for XP is limited but it does run. Windows 2000 however runs really well - of course, depending on what you need it to do.

Running here on my 933 Quicksilver:

Picture 1.png
 
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Hater

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Sep 20, 2017
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I recently upgraded my partners mothers XP machine (Dual Core Pentium, 3GB RAM) as she was having malware/Skype issues.

I put 7 on it and it was fine, but bit the bullet and put Windows 10 on it. Was surprised to find on low end hardware, 10 out-performs 7.

Food for thought.
 

bobesch

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Oct 21, 2015
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I've tried Win FLP but it's no match for Micro XP - I'd recommend that if you want optimal XP experience in VPC (or real hardware for that matter).
What about malware with MicroXP. - I looked for MircoXP some time ago and stayed with FLP 'cause of some reports about the malware-thing...