QEMU can emulate ARM CPUs so you can use a virtual ARM computer on your PC.
Don't forget that VMWare Server is free - it's perfect for running Linux. VirtualBox is probably the most user-friendly, and feature-rich, VM for someone not familiar with using VMs. It will even allow you to run a 64-bit guest OS on a 32-bit host (provided you have a 64-bit processor - who doesn't nowadays).
I like QEMU, but it's probably not the best choice if you've not used a VM before.
If you're into writing an OS - I digress a little here - I can heartily recommend AMD's SimNow. It's slow, but has a debugger built in that let's you single-step through your program; right from boot onwards if you want. (I know you can debug with QEMU, but it's not easy!)
I'm pretty sure that there are no limitations on the use of VMWare server. Of course if you want support you have to pay; but that's one of the advantages of VMWare - you can get support.
I had missed the point about ARM development, even though I did read that other thread. I still wouldn't, initially, recommend developing on an emulated ARM environment; better to use a cross-compiler on an x86-hosted Linux. It's just so much easier to set Linux up, and get all the software you need, with something like Fedora. Certainly QEMU would be useful for testing ARM stuff (or do what I did and get a Buffalo Linkstation).
for circuit and emulation of ARM,proteus might be another choice.
I lost a chance to work directly with ARM.
Now i'm trying to find a just-so-so job,to collect some money for further study.
i may use ARM & Linux in my amateurish designs of instruments.
now my research is application of X-ray