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Evaluate Windows 7 Using A Pre-Configured VHD Files [How-To]


If your a systems Admin and you want to evaluate before you begin rolling it out to your customers, Microsoft has made it easy for you by providing (virtual hard disk) already setup and ready for import into Microsoft’s new Server 2008 Hyper-V Virtual Server Platform / Hypervisor.  The Windows 7 VM Image has a 90 day evaluation time bomb but, that should be plenty of time to play around and get prepare with your GPO’s and other testing with your BUIT apps. 

Let’s take a look.

Note:  This Windows 7 evaluation package can only be run on the following systems:

· Windows Server 2008 Hyper-V
· Windows Server 2008 R2 Hyper-V
· Microsoft Hyper-V Server 2008
· Microsoft Hyper-V Server 2008 R2


1.  Download the Pre-Configured Windows 7 Evaluation VHD. [Download Link]

Microsoft Windows 7 VHD Download

2.  Extract the image, you’ll have to Accept the License Terms to continue.

Windows 7 VHD Install License

3.  Now you’ll have to extract the 3 compressed files you just downloaded, don’t worry the extractor will do all 3 at once.  This part might take a while, but to get started Click Install.

Windows 7 Install Windows

4.  Once the archive is extracted, load up Hyper-V Manager.

Launch Microsoft Hyper-V Manager

5.  In Hyper-V manager, under the Actions menu Click the Import Virtual Machine… option.

Hyper-V Manager Import Virtual Machine

6.  Use the Import Virtual Machine window to Browse to the Windows7Fullx86ENT90Days/Windows7Fullx86ENT90Days folder, then Click Select Folder.

Hyper-V Manager Import Virtual Machine Choose Image

7. Now that you are back to the Import Virtual Machine window, Click Import.

import the windows 7 evalluation virtual machine

8.  The Windows 7 evaluation virtual machine should now show up on your Virtual Machines list.  Right-Click the virtual machine Windows7Fullx86ENT90Days, and then Click Start.

Related Article:  Add Run Line to Windows 7 Start Menu

the virtual machines context menu for windows 7 evaluation

9.  Once it starts, Connect to the Windows7Fullx… virtual machine by using the Connect… context menu option.  The setup process will begin and you’ll need to Setup Windows 7 Enterprise.  The process is fairly simple and doesn’t require any special instructions.

windows 7 enterprise vhd installation and initial setup

All done!

Now you can play around with Windows 7 Enterprise as much as you like for the next 3 months.  Be advised Microsoft provided about 200 new GPO’s to manage these Windows 7 Clients to take you time in your investigation!windows 7 enterprise, running as a vhd

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One Response to Evaluate Windows 7 Using A Pre-Configured VHD Files [How-To]

  1. shockersh February 19, 2010 at 12:09 pm #

    I love .vhd files from Technet. Use them all the time. SERIOUS time saver.

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