Virtual PC 2007 has been finalized and been released to the web for download today. You can read more about Virtual PC 2007 (and download it), from the new (and great looking!) Virtual PC website: http://www.microsoft.com/windows/products/winfamily/virtualpc/default.mspx.
Features of Virtual PC 2007:
The Technical Overview White Paper is available, (you will need an XPS Viewer) if you want to read more about the inner workings and changes with Virtual PC 2007.
So can I run Exchange 2007 in a Virtual PC Environment then? Unfortunately, once people see "x64" support in the feature list, they stop reading at that point, and miss the note that x64 versions of Windows are supported as the HOST. Not the guest… There is a 32 bit version of Exchange available for testing purposes, but it is not supported in production. A pre-configured VPC of Exchange 2007 is available here, and it works great within VPC 2007. (You will receive a message that the hardware standard isn't recognized, but it will then boot up and run just fine…)
Support for 64 bit GUEST operating systems will come with Windows Server Virtualization within 180 days of the release of Longhorn. There are some AWESOME capabilities that will be introduced with WSV and System Center Virtual Machine Manager that should keep our friends at VMWare busy for a while. I'll try to post some more information once I take the time to figure out what is public and what is not ;)
While you're at it, Virtual PC Images of the following applications are available (perfect for testing them out, working on a certification, or to build another skill set to add to your resume)
Now, in order to set this post aside from some of the other "Virtual PC 2007 has been released!" postings, I thought I would share some best practices relating to the usage of Virtual PC that I have picked up from doing demos over the last year or so (as well as from an internal demo optimization doc that made its way into my inbox a few months ago):
Turns on host-side disk caching, which can improve performance of virtual machines running operating systems other than Windows. This parameter can be useful for resolving poor performance problems with disk intensive tasks. This parameter can be used only when starting Virtual PC.
I'll finish with some links to useful Virtualization reading:
Virtual PC Guy's WebLogTips to speed up Virtual PC for Microsoft CRMVirtual Server Community
Post any virtualization questions (relating to Microsoft virtualization solutions) in the comments, and I'll answer to the best of my ability! I am really excited about both what we have as well as what is coming, and I'd love to answer any questions in the tech community at large.
My team just gave two successful all-day sessions to Gold Partners on the tools and best practices for Deploying Vista and Office, and I wanted to share with everyone a collection of useful links relating to the tools we covered:
Microsoft Deployment Guidance
Windows Vista Deployment EnhancementsWindows Vista Deployment Step by Step Guide
Windows Vista Migration Step-by-Step Guide
Windows Deployment Services Update Step-by-Step Guide
Business Desktop Deployment 2007 (BDD)
User State Migration Tool
USMT Download linkUSMT Resource KitUSMT documentationWhat is new in USMT 3.0What does USMT3.0 migrate?
Windows PEWindows PE 2.0 for Windows Vista OverviewTechNet: Getting Ready for Windows PE 2.0How to create a custom startup WinPE CD-ROM in Windows XPMicrosoft Windows Preinstallation Environment (WinPE) for System BuildersWindows Preinstallation at Windows Hardware Development Central (WHDC)
ImageX and System Image Manager (SIM)
ImageX and WIM image formatSystem Image ManagerWindows SIM Technical ReferenceWindows Automated Installation KitImaging and Desktop Engineering
Microsoft Office Ultimate 2007 Product GuideMicrosoft Office Compatibility Pack for 2007 File Formats2007 Microsoft Office Add-in: Microsoft Save as PDF 2007 Microsoft Office Add-in: Microsoft Save as XPS
Windows Deployment Services (WDS)
Microsoft Windows Deployment ServicesWindows Vista Deployment EnhancementsMSDN WDS LibraryWindows Deployment Services Update Step-by-Step Guide