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Advantage of XP Mode Over VMWare or VirtualBox?

Last response: in Windows 7
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July 2, 2009 11:56:34 PM

Other than the "free" version of XP (as long as you pay $50 more for the upgrade!), is there any benefit to XP Mode with Windows 7 Professional over using VMWare or VirtualBox if you already have a licensed copy of XP? I have a Windows Home Server which backs up my PC's automatically, so I'm struggling to see any real value for me in going with Windows 7 Professional over Home Premium. Anyone have any thoughts on this?
July 8, 2009 1:43:09 AM

I was wondering the exact same thing. I already run tinyxp in virtual box and everything runs perfectly so what's the point of xp mode again?
July 8, 2009 2:05:27 AM

To put it simply: You don't need VMware and Virtualbox.
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July 8, 2009 2:47:46 AM

xp mode requires a "download", it is not a "mode" at ALL, but really a copy of virtual pc 2007 almost exactly. So no, just run XP in vmware and you have the same thing.
July 8, 2009 12:18:58 PM

You do have the benefit of publishing Apps running in XP Mode to Win7 though.

That way you can have XP only apps runining in XP Mode appear as an icon on your Win7 desktop and have them running alongside your normal Win7 apps completely transparently.

I don't think this is possible with VMWare?


The bigger question here though is what applications are you running on XP that you can't run on Win7? What benefits has XP got that can't be transfered/simulated on Win7.

If it purely a compatability thing and an application definately won't run on Win7 then for sure go XP Mode as you will never have to physically open your virtual copy of XP ever again! - Well apart from to install the application in the first place ;-)
July 8, 2009 6:54:30 PM

inquisitor03 said:
You do have the benefit of publishing Apps running in XP Mode to Win7 though.

That way you can have XP only apps runining in XP Mode appear as an icon on your Win7 desktop and have them running alongside your normal Win7 apps completely transparently.

I don't think this is possible with VMWare?


The bigger question here though is what applications are you running on XP that you can't run on Win7? What benefits has XP got that can't be transfered/simulated on Win7.

If it purely a compatability thing and an application definately won't run on Win7 then for sure go XP Mode as you will never have to physically open your virtual copy of XP ever again! - Well apart from to install the application in the first place ;-)


saving a couple mouse clicks on some icons doesen't really qualify as a new mode to me though. It's still a tweaked copy of virtual pc 2007 that lets you have shortcuts.
July 8, 2009 7:47:31 PM

I agree it's not the first thing I imagined when Microsoft said it was implementing an XP Mode into 7. I expected something much more sophisticated than wrapping up VPC2007 into the win7 shell.

That said... I would still much prefer to have to click 1 icon then the hassle of loading VPC2007, waiting for my virtual XP to boot, log in, start my app and then having to keep swaping from my Win7 desktop to my VM Desktop!

Much nicer to just have the XP app appear as any other regular app directly in Win7... that's worth the extra $50 in my opinion!
July 8, 2009 9:43:33 PM

true, but for the hardcore virtual user, vmware has better fake hardware,,,hehe
a b $ Windows 7
July 9, 2009 8:26:30 AM

inquisitor03 said:
That said... I would still much prefer to have to click 1 icon then the hassle of loading VPC2007, waiting for my virtual XP to boot, log in, start my app and then having to keep swaping from my Win7 desktop to my VM Desktop
Have a look at the latest version of VirtualBox. That let's you do a very similar thing, is free, is a lot more versatile than VirtualPC and, to my mind, a lot quicker. I have found XP Mode to be painfully slow.
July 9, 2009 2:58:25 PM

The XP mode is basicly a VM of XP in seemless mode... thats all... And seemless mode is a feature of other VM Software... been around for a while now, Microsoft finally caught up, well sort of, they just making it sound all spectacular and special. :p 
October 2, 2009 8:38:31 AM

The bullet point is the OS integration and the "free" license of XP (free in the sense that you already paid for it in the 7 Bussiness and Ultimate editions) . Outside that, there's no real difference between running XP Mode and installing XP on a virtual machine of any sorts.
a b $ Windows 7
October 5, 2009 5:18:14 PM

Notice the lack of GPU acceleration, which just killed XP mode for game compatability.

Why am i not surprised...
a b $ Windows 7
October 5, 2009 5:23:25 PM

gamerk316 said:
Notice the lack of GPU acceleration, which just killed XP mode for game compatability.

Why am i not surprised...



Meh - It's a VM, and I'm not aware of any which support hardware acceleration. Microsoft put XP Mode there so (small) businesses have a way to preserve and continue to use their legacy apps. Has nothing to do with gamers.
November 10, 2009 12:35:52 PM

VirualBox supports 3D hardware acceleration for OpenGL apps.

I'm using a legacy version of Autodesk Inventor design software (v7) that I could not get to run under Win7. I am testing this on a TX2510 tablet pc with Win7 Ultimate host and AMD-V enabled.

In my experience, XP Mode in Win7, while it will allow Inventor to run, cannot compare to VirtualBox.

Under VBox 3.0 with guest XP Pro SP2, Inventor runs nearly flawlessly with excellent 3D graphics and nearly no lag - despite using an integrated graphics card.

VBox has seamless mode which allows Xp's windows to coexist with Win7. While XP Mode's integration with the host is handy - it's totally useless if I can't run the legacy app.

Both XP mode and VBox integrate my tablet pc's pen and touch screen capabilities very well into the XP environemt.

It's disappointing to find the XP mode implementation so weak compared to an opensource solution freely obatainable.

Go with VirtualBox.
!