With Windows 7, Microsoft has taken the compatibility features for older legacy applications to a different level with Windows Virtual PC 7 Beta. Windows Virtual PC 7 beta is a feature of Windows 7 Professional, Ultimate, and Enterprise which provides you the capability to run multiple Windows environments such as Windows XP Mode from your Windows 7 desktop.
With XP Compatibility mode feature, an application installed under your Virtual Windows XP environment will be published as a shortcut on your Windows 7 Desktop making it availble to run from within Windows 7 runnning under the XP compatibility mode.
To install Windows XP compatibility mode there are special hardware requirements as with Hyper-V on Windows Server 2008.
The PC or laptop should support Intel VT (Virtualization technology) or AMD-V (Virtualization) and Data Execution Prevention feature and turned ON from the BIOS. Check with your laptop/Desktop manuals on how to enable these features. Almost all the newer PCs & Laptops do support these features.
Once you’ve made sure that the hardware does support and is enabled in the BIOS, we may proceed to install Windows XP mode. If you are running the Windows 7 Beta operating system then it needs to be upgraded to Windows 7 RC (Release Candidate build 7100).
Download & Install Windows Virtual PC 7 Beta
Now, click here to download and install Windows Virtual 7 Beta. This requires a reboot once the installation is complete.
Download & Install Windows XP mode Beta
Click here to download and install Windows XP mode Beta
Follow the onscreen instructions to complete the installation and launch the Windows XP mode. Alternatively can be started from “Start – All programs – Windows Virtual PC – Virtual Windows XP”
Now, install your legacy application under the Virtual Windows XP (XP mode) which may nor work in Windows 7 and you should see a shortcut created on your Windows 7 Start menu.