E-66

Beneficial to do test installs in a VM vs. installing on a HDD?

8 posts in this topic

I'm playing around with NTLite and some other 'slimming' tools, trying to tweak a future unattended Win 7 install.  Much like I did when I was trying to slim down XP with nLite, after each session of tweaks and adjustments, I'm installing the new source to a spare HDD to see if I like the results.  

The other day I read (not here) that it was suggested to do 'test installs' in a VM.  I know nothing about using VMs, so my question is, why?  Could someone explain the benefit of doing the install in a VM vs. a HDD?

Is it speed?  Currently I'm tranferring my tweaked source to a USB 2.0 drive, which takes 4+ minutes.  Installing from USB then takes about 8 minutes.  Would it be more efficient time-wise to do this with a VM?  If not, what is the VM advantage?

 

Thanks.

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Well...

I'm installing the new source to a spare HDD to see if I like the results.
That's one way to do it. Pretty much the same as doing it in a VM, the idea being the same. Leaves your functional running OS intact while testing your created Install.
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So the only reason to install in a VM is if you don't have an extra HDD or partition available?

 

What about my speed question?  How quick would it be to install in a VM vs. a HDD?

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Slower. It does it via a Software Interface. However, using an ISO instead of VM-Attached USB or Physical CD, it will be much faster (HDD speed), kind of like copying Install to a pre-formatted HDD and running it from there instead. Still, the Interface will cause some delay in speed.

 

Try googling for VM's or "Virtual Machines". You'll get the skinny directly from the Vendors. Each have different capabilities and many are free, including the one supplied with/for Windows7.

 

Odd that you ask that here when the WWW is rife with this information. Do some research and if you don't understand then we can expand on it.

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It seems most people use VMs to test because they are easier to set up than physical systems. Also a lot of people don't seem to have access to other computers they can just reinstall an OS on all the time. So I think that it is common due to its ease of use.

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Another benefit of using a VM is that you don't need to set up a secondary machine to test on.

 

While installing the OS you can continue using your system like you would normally.

 

The 15 minutes you now spend installing your system for each test build can be used more efficient by installing the OS in the background on your running system.

Edited by Acheron
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Thanks for the input, everyone.

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Install on vmware or hyper can use ramdisk as hdd save time and wear on ssd hdd

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