Windows 7 Patch Removes Hardware Virtualization Requirement Of Windows XP Mode

Martin Brinkmann
Mar 20, 2010
Updated • Aug 11, 2016
Windows, Windows 7
Update: Microsoft has integrated the hardware virtualization patch into Service Pack 1 for Windows 7. It is no longer necessary to download the fix manually. If you have not installed the service pack already, download it from Microsoft to do so.

Not many users have problems running software on Windows 7, as the operating system seems to be compatible with most available programs. Microsoft has nevertheless added the so called Windows XP Mode to the operating system. This mode provides users with access to a virtual Windows XP system that integrates smoothly into the Windows 7 operating system.

The reason for the integration is to provide users of the operating system with options to run software in Windows XP legacy mode. This can be useful for software that works under XP but does not run under Windows 7 for whatever reason.

Windows XP Mode required a processor with hardware virtualization support when it was introduced. This meant that it could not be used on some systems if support for the feature was missing.

Users can find out if their PC is supporting hardware virtualization by downloading Microsoft's Hardware Assisted Virtualization Tool.

Microsoft announced that it removed the hardware virtualization requirement of Windows XP Mode two days ago, and that it would make a patch for the operating system.

The effect is that Windows XP mode can be run on systems that do not support cpu hardware virtualization. The only requirement remaining is to have the right edition of Windows 7 that supports XP mode (the professional editions support it meaning Pro, Ultimate and Enterprise).

The patches have now been made available for 32-bit and 64-bit editions of Windows 7. Once installed they remove the requirement of hardware virtualization which will get rid of error messages like "Unable to start Windows Virtual PC because hardware-assisted virtualization is disabled" and "Cannot start Windows Virtual PC Host Process. Check the System event log for more details" which users experienced previously.

A genuine validation check is performed before the download becomes available.

Update for Windows 7 (KB977206)
Update for Windows 7 for x64-based Systems (KB977206)

Install this update to remove the prerequisites required to run Windows Virtual PC and XP mode

Have you been making use of the Windows XP Mode in Windows 7? If so how was your experience?

Windows 7 Patch Removes Hardware Virtualization Requirement Of Windows XP Mode
Article Name
Windows 7 Patch Removes Hardware Virtualization Requirement Of Windows XP Mode
Microsoft announced recently that it made the decision to remove the hardware virtualization requirement from Windows 7's Windows XP Mode.
Ghacks Technology News

Tutorials & Tips

Previous Post: «
Next Post: «


  1. Mustafa said on March 20, 2010 at 7:32 pm

    This is great!… will try this out.

    Hope they release a similar patch for Hyper-V too!

  2. DanTe said on March 20, 2010 at 3:52 pm

    Windows XP Mode experience in one word: SUCKS!

    I tried it to run old games. Does not work. I had to do what I always did, starting from Windows XP – use VMWare.

Leave a Reply

Check the box to consent to your data being stored in line with the guidelines set out in our privacy policy

We love comments and welcome thoughtful and civilized discussion. Rudeness and personal attacks will not be tolerated. Please stay on-topic.
Please note that your comment may not appear immediately after you post it.