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Summary:

One of the best inclusions in Windows 7 is the ability to run XP in a virtual machine. This move by Microsoft is to insure that customers who have programs that will only run in XP can still be used under Windows 7. This is a […]

notebook5121_003012One of the best inclusions in Windows 7 is the ability to run XP in a virtual machine. This move by Microsoft is to insure that customers who have programs that will only run in XP can still be used under Windows 7. This is a great way to address the need to run XP from time to time — except on Sony VAIO laptops. The notebook maker has admitted it has disabled the virtualization technology (VT) built into Intel processors for “security reasons.”

We’re not talking about disabling it by default, no, Sony has deemed it wise to make it impossible to ever run VT on VAIO laptops. When will companies learn that customers do not want functions disabled on purchased products, especially expensive ones? In response to the building uproar, Sony is now backing down slightly and stating that they will enable VT on “select” VAIO models in the future, although they are not elaborating on which ones. It’s just one other thing to check into before buying that new notebook. Sheesh.

(via CNET)

  1. I seriously doubt its for security. HP does this on their Business Desktops too. I found this out when I tried to use the AMD version of VT (AMD-V).

    A call to HP support cleared it up. “We don’t allow you do use AMD-V even though the processor in that machine (DC5750) supports it. If you want Virtualization buy a more expensive HP machine where we DON’T disable it.”

    wow

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    1. Gordon Cahill Monday, August 10, 2009

      I had this on my AW series, which is the most expensive Vaio made, so it’s not pricing related. There s a patch for most models available and I now have vrtualisation enabled.

      Gordon

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  2. lets call it silliness and bad customer relations and move on :)
    Sometimes you have a feeling companies didn’t realize how messed-up the economy really is.

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  3. Although disabling VT can have a security benefit, I smell a digital rights protection rat, especially coming from Sony.

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  4. The Sony Reader software EULA says “Though Shall Not Use This Product Under Virtualization”. So by killing VT Sony is helping protect you from violating one of their EULA’s using their own hardware. :-)

    I smile above but I wasn’t smiling when I realized I couldn’t use Windows XP mode in Windows 7 on my highly over priced Vaio P. :(

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  5. GoodThings2Life Monday, August 10, 2009

    This is absolutely insane for any vendor. Purposely gimping functionality of your hardware is a great way to shoot your sales in the foot.

    Lucky for me, I’ve been boycotting Sony for years now.

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  6. “One of the best inclusions in Windows 7 is the ability to run XP in a virtual machine.”

    I don’t see why this is supposed to be a big deal. Virtualisation is quite common these days. It is very sad in the first place that they can’t achieve native XP compatibility.

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    1. Its a big deal because of licensing. MS is saying you are essentially getting and XP OS license to virtualize. While the actual implemenation of virtualization is trivial, I agree, the cost of a now unavailable XP license isn’t. This is especially true for the poor folks with OEM Windows licenses.

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    2. I see. I don’t envy you Windows guys for this kind of concern. But keep up the great Tablet stuff!

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