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I Hate Linux

Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Indefinite WHS testing in VPC

In many homes this morning countless children screamed and yelled as they discovered Santa had visited and left them just what they'd asked for.

What follows is something I learned a few weeks ago and that made me act similarly... only I was giggling like a school girl.

This blog post last week was my Santa.

A major pain point I've encountered with testing custom code in an unactivated copy of Windows Home Server running in Virtual PC is that it automatically syncs the guest PC's clock to that of the host PC, ensuring only 30 days of testing before needing to reinstall, not so anymore with the host_time_sync section in a .vpc file:

<microsoft>
  <components>
    <host_time_sync>
      <enabled type="boolean">true</enabled>
    </host_time_sync>
  </components>

Needless to say I was quite let down when months ago I saw this blog post from the same author, saying there was no way to do it. What's worse is that I missed the comment saying how it is possible.

Now my test VPC will keep on reporting that it was installed on 12/2/2007, that today is 12/9/2007 and I've got 23 days until Windows requires activation... something it will keep thinking so long as I don't commit changes to the virtual hard disks.

If however I save changes to the undo disks the counter will proceed forward... until I throw out those changes and revert back to the previous state with a mouse click.

It should be noted that this kind of hack is largely worthless for piracy purposes (as far as Windows Home Server is concerned) and only useful for testing as it is only effective so long as you do not commit changed to the virtual hard disks... because if you do you allow the activation timer to keep on counting down and eventually expire.

Merry Christmas and Happy Testing!

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