Sunday, January 04, 2009

Installing Windows 7 on VirtualBox

I just received a copy of Windows 7 to install and test on a MacBook using VirtualBox. installing a pre-release Windows operating system in a virtual machine is always exciting and not always working.... however, within a blink of a eye I had a running Windows 7 VM on my macbook. Nice to note, in the EULA it states the following: "Time-Sensitive Software. The software will stop running on August 1, 2009. You may not receive any other notice. You may not be able to access data used with the software when it stops running." So a fixed end-date is set for Windows 7 Build 6965.winmain.081122-1150.

The first thing I noticed was that the first screen you get is a black screen with a progress bar telling you Windows is copying files. When it is at a 100% it stalls for about a minute, I think it is still copying files and starting some processes. One other thing I noticed is that it takes a long time before it starts expanding the files, most important is that it is expanding files so no problem here.

After a 'quick' installation I tried to install the VirtualBox guest additions however failed. The current version of windows was not supported by the VirtualBox guest additions was the message I got returned by the installer, this resulted in the fact that for example my network interface for windows 7 was not working in my VirtualBox. The solution for this is simple, go to 'Computer Management' and update the drivers for your network card manualy, select a location for windows to look for the driver and the VirtualBox drivers will be installed and you will be able to use your network card.

Until this moment I am however still unable to get the screen resolution set to 1440x900. Not even when I use the VirtualBox drivers. For a test I can live with this however when Windows 7 comes into production I hope that the combination Windows 7, VirtualBox and my macbook will be supported. I think we can not blame Microsoft for this, we will have to look into the drivers provided by VirtualBox.

I have missed the windows vista 'revolution' and from what I have heard, windows 7 is somewhat similar to vista. I might happen due to this reason that I talk about new things in Windows 7 even do they are already present in Windows Vista. It is my intention to write some blogposts in the upcoming days about my findings on Windows 7.
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