There has been a lot of talk lately surrounding the limitation Microsoft has introduced for Windows Vista virtualization. An Associated Press article has connected the dots between Mac
users, virtualization technology, security issues and Windows Vista. The problems with Windows Vista virtualization have emerged after the operating system has become commercially available, and they involve the fact that the Redmond Company does not allow Vista Home Basic and Home Premium editions to run as either host or guest operating systems.
The fact of the matter is that there is no news here. Scott Woodgate one of the directors of Microsoft's Windows Client Product Planning team revealed the limitations of Vista virtualization since July 2006. The Windows Vista EULA has also been available since 2006 with specific details concerning Windows Vista virtualization. The only piece of news worth while is the fact that, according to Woodgate, Microsoft has considered disallowing Windows Vista virtualization altogether, following Joanna Rutkowska's successful injection of malicious code into the 64-bit Vista Kernel.
However, Microsoft did not ban Windows Vista from virtual machines. The Redmond Company only restricted the editions of the operating system available for virtualization. In this context, only Windows Vista Business, Enterprise and Ultimate can be used as both host and guest operating systems in virtual machines.
But the true measure of Windows Vista virtualization limitations fails to go beyond the operating system's license agreement. Both Windows Vista Home Basic and Home Premium can run as host and guest operating systems in a virtual machine. There is of course the small aspect that this would contravene with the EULA and that Microsoft will not offer any support for such scenarios.