"Like most Microsoft ALM geeks, I downloaded the Visual Studio 11 ALM VM the day Brian Keller posted it. One of the first things I realized is that the VM is for 64-bit operating systems only. This is because Team Foundation Server 11 only runs on a 64-bit server OS. This is no problem for me, because I have Hyper-V running here at my desk and I can run 64-bit VMs just fine. But, if you are one of the unfortunate many who do not have a W2K8 64-bit environment sitting around, then this blog post is for you (maybe).
VirtualBox to the rescue
VirtualBox is Oracle’s virtualization product. It’s freely available as Open Source Software under the terms of the GNU GPL. Personally, I'm a Hyper-V guy myself having the occasional fling with Virtual PC; but, VirtualBox has one feature that really seals the deal for me – and it’s very handy in this specific situation: it supports 64-bit guest operating systems, running on 32-bit host operating systems! Yes, you read that correctly. It’s magic. You just need to make sure that your 32-bit host hardware supports hardware virtualization. You will need to verify that your system supports this and possibly enable it in the BIOS. Microsoft even has a tool you can use to help verify.
I didn't know (or really even believe possible) that Oracle's VirtualBox can run x64 virtual machines on x86 (i.3. 32 bit) host machines/OS's. All the machines I can play with this on are x64, so I can't verify it, but even so, I thought this a cool article, as I've wanted to run those VM's but my access to Hyper-V servers is limited. These instructions make it look like it pretty darn easy to run that VHD on VirtualBox... Now I'm going to have to download that beast again... :P
Related Past Post XRef:
Visual Studio/TFS11 ALM Demo's... Mate! See the VS/TFS 11 ALM's hands-on-labs in DemoMate form
Want to play with Visual Studio 11 & TFS 11 Dev Preview but don't want to install it (and have access to a Hyper-V server)? Here's a VHD just for you...