Installing Windows XP SP3 for VM Users

The PC world has been eagerly waiting for the final release of Window XP, Service Pack 3 (SP3). However, Mac users who plan to install it in their virtualization environment should know that Microsoft has tested the service pack under those conditions as well. Planning for the upgrade, however, is little different than installing on the raw hardware.

Microsoft told TMO that the new service pack has in fact been tested in various virtualization environments, so users of Parallels Desktop and VMware Fusion shouldnit need to worry about that. This reporter installed it and found that the only gotcha was the need to stop and restart the VM after installation.

On Wednesday, Greg Keizer at Computerworld recommended that users should do some planning: back up everything, possibly disable anti-virus software and refer to Microsoftis prerequisite list. That list and more information about install process can be found on Microsoftis "Steps to take before you install Windows XP Service Pack 3."

Nearly 1,200 patches and hot fixes are contained in the service pack, so backing up the virtual machine for Mac users might be a good idea before installation.

Ben Rudolph, Parallelsi Director of Communications, told TMO on Tuesday that theyire checking things out and will likely issue a new build of Desktop that will insure 100 percent compatibility with the update. Meanwhile, Mr. Keizeris article is a good place to start building some warm fuzzys prior to the update.