Archive for January, 2009

Virtualization might hurt Windows 7

January 19, 2009

I have been running Windows 7 in VirtualBox for a couple of a days (in Ubuntu 8.10). So far I have had no serious issues. I have not tested extensively, just every day use as a programmer. So in no way am I saying that Windows 7 is bad or good. I have opinions on that but they are not relevant to this little piece.

Based on my apparent success a colleague of mine decided to take the leap and run Windows 7 on his laptop. After the initial installation all seemed well, however after just a day I was informed that Windows 7 was abandoned for Vista again. Apparently the issue was screen card compatibility problems and strange crashes in explorer.

This got me to wondering, is the version running in the virtual machine doing ok because it uses generic drivers? If so how will this impact on feedback about Windows 7. How many people will be trying Windows 7 in a virtual machine first before they actually install it on any machine. How many of those people will get a rude awakening when they actually install on their machines?

There is a lot of guess work and assumptions going into this little theory of mine. It is still early days and hardware compatibility will certainly be tested extensively by Microsoft, if they know what is good for them. I don’t know how much Microsoft relies on feedback from the man on the street anyway. If they do however rely on it in any way they might just be missing a part of the picture if the man on the street is using virtualization technology.

I have not checked to see if Windows 7 has something like Ubuntu’s live cd functionality. If it does not then they better have a serious look at it.

It is pure speculation but could have interesting implications.