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I've got a laptop for work which comes with Windows 7 Home Premium. I need to use some devices whose driver doesn't run Windows versions greater than XP. I want to use Windows XP mode in this machine, on 7 HP. I don't have a copy of Windows XP to create a virtual machine using VMware Player. Is there any possibility to run XP mode on 7 HP?


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up vote 8 down vote accepted

No it isn't impossible, but it breaks the licensing terms therefore it is not legal and the methods should not be discussed.

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Upgrading from Windows Home Premium to Windows Ultimate will enable XP Mode to be legally used. Having just successfully installed a driver and software for a device in XP Mode that was not supported on Windows 7 Professional 64-bit, I am reasonably sure that if you do upgrade, you will have a decent chance of a good result.

Another pathway is to buy a license for XP to run in Virtual PC. You can install and run Virtual PC on (nearly) any version of Windows. XP Mode itself is two separate things. First, it is a Virtual PC instance with XP installed and licensed for use. Second, it is a collection of integration tools that make the boundary between the virtual PC and the real PC a little less difficult to deal with.

It would appear to me that the ability to forward an unsupported USB device into the VM is a feature of Virtual PC itself, and so it should work without the full XP Mode integration.

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