Microsoft Ends Official Support for Alternative OSes with Virtual PC

Microsoft has dropped support for alternative OSes.

“However, the new version will no longer offer official support for BSD Unix, Linux, NetWare or Solaris on Intel.”

“Instead, Microsoft is focusing on enabling Windows Server 2003 administrators to run Windows NT 4 applications on their updated servers. This, in turn, will help NT users migrate to Windows Server 2003. Technically, Virtual PC officially enables users to run XP, W2K, NT Workstation, 98, 95, ME, Windows 3.1, and OS/2 VMs on XP, W2K, NT 4 SP6 or Server 2003.”

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Now what use is a Virtual PC program that only runs Windows? Why would I ever want to run Windows NT on a new Windows box? How many applications out there are not updated immediately when a new version of Windows is released?

It’s really no surprise, we all knew this was going to happen when they purchased Connectix.


4 thoughts on “Microsoft Ends Official Support for Alternative OSes with Virtual PC

  1. It not about running third-party software. It is all about the custom homegrown applications that have been written for previous versions of Windows. The cost and time to port these applications can be non-trivial. However, that is not to say that running them in a virtual os is any kind of long term solution…

  2. Pardon my ignorance, but I thought all Windows programs run on any version of Windows if done properly. I still don’t see the point. I understood why the OS/2 version of Connetix was used to run a virtual copy of Windows to allow OS/2 users to use Office, etc. And likewise for Linux users. But if you have Windows, I really don’t see the point. I guess it’s a moot point since I won’t be using it.

  3. In a perfect world sure… but then why would many applications then need to release newer versions with the release of new versions of Windows?

    Newer versions of Windows bring small changes or bugs in some APIs (especially undocumented ones) and could bring changes in general architecture. For example, Services were completely reworked from NT4 to Windows 2000.

    If changes are as drastic in Longhorn as I have read then I would be extremely pessimistic as to the possibility of current applications converting seamlessly…

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