For a long time I was critical of MS for forcing developers to use their VirtualPC VM's because it just wasn't realistic: people use VMWare and VirtualBox as well as Macs and Linux. It was always an example of MS's frequent "plays poorly with others" behavior. Kudos to them for making it right.
If you wanted to legally run multiple versions of IE without having to have multiple Windows licenses for every combination (e.g. IE8/XP, IE8/Win7, IE10 Win7, IE10 Win8, etc...) you had to use the MS-provided virtual machines. However, these were only ever made available as VirtualPC images. So there was no way to run them, even on Windows, without all sorts of machinations (some of which may have violated the ToS).
Which competitors don't? The only competitor that comes to mind is Apple and they don't block this either -- though I believe they were the last holdout. Nor does Google, in any capacity, with Android or ChromeOS.
Edit: I am dead wrong. Apple only permits the virtualization of OS X on Apple hardware, per the EULA. It does not permit the virtualization of OS X on non-Apple hardware.
The EULA forbids you to run OS X on non-Apple hardware though.
"to install, use and run up to two (2) additional copies or instances of the Apple Software within virtual operating system environments on each Mac Computer you own or control that is already running the Apple Software, for purposes of: (a) software development; (b) testing during software development; (c) using OS X Server; or (d) personal, non-commercial use."
"They" being someone that posted an image on bittorrent? Apple doesn't license OS X for VMWare anywhere except Apple hardware. You can't even run a 10.8 guest on a 10.7 host per their license, which is really annoying.
It's possible to attempt using OSX on a PC through VMware, but I can attest to the fact that it works very poorly. We tried to do this at one of my jobs, and for development in Xcode, it was for all practical purposes unusable.
True. And although there is a process to convert VirtualPC images to work with other formats, which I did (on OSX), however it was a major pain in the ass. Frankly, I love the new model. MS deserves to be denigrated when they do bad, and they certainly have a mountain of web-karma to countermand, but they did good in this respect and deserve to be praised for it.
Why? Why the proprietary rar format? I mean, is there any reason to actually use rar over even "only" xz nowadays or for big downloads, zpaq (lrzip is probably not mainstream enough I guess)? And 1000 megabyte parts? Why?
Hi Tmmrn. I work on the team that made these available. We originally had these as >3Gb single files and had many requests to reduce the file sizes from people who had failed transfers. It also helps when using sneaker net to setup test environments that are isolated and you need USB sticks to move bits around.
We went with RAR because:
* It's available on all platforms
* No client or 3rd party software needed to extract when using self extracting SFX and EXEs respectively
* some degree of built in resiliency and self correction
Hope you find them useful. Open to suggestions for improvement too. Follow the team @IEDevChat for updates and feedback.
afaik the plain .zip doesn't support multi-part archives and that's what they needed due to the file size.
by citing 7-zip (site) I was of course suggesting the .7z file format that is opensource and there are softwares and libraries freely available.
Alternatively, this is a perfect use case for a torrent.
It always boggles the mind how the big players seem to be avoiding this download scheme like the plague even though it's unrivalled for these kinds of downloads, especially when there's a rush on the files like you'll no doubt notice in the next 10 days or so.
Most large corporations, but for the freelancers and folks working for small business, a .torrent would be a godsend as an option. Especially if done with something like S3's torrent support, which lets Amazon function as the always-there seeder.
Glad you are here. Thank you so much for doing this. Just wanted to let you know that I found out about this via a twitter sponsored tweet. So whoever decided to do that as a marketing idea probably is getting their money's worth.
A while back (some time in the last year), they had a few of the files zipped up. There were a lot of support requests for help unzipping it. The files had a >4GiB file inside, requiring zip64 extensions. I remember at the time, my out of the box version of unzip on OS X did not support zip64 extensions - I think 6.0 is when support is added.
I'm not arguing for rar in particular, just commenting on the difficulties I saw and experienced when using the zip files they provided at one point.
I remember this problem too (I was reading http://twitter.com/reybango at this time). It was when they first launched modern.ie. If I remember correctly, there was also a problem with the initial XP image that led to it being pulled.
OK, now I've got a pretty solid IE test setup, how do I go about testing Mac browsers (eg Safari) without a Mac? AFAIK the Mac OS X license says it can't be virtualized under non-Mac hardware. It looks like the only options are to use remote testing services, buy Apple hardware or illegally use Mac on a non-Mac host.
I use browserstack a fair bit already (and have used saucelabs in he past). These remote testing services are really great and cover 80% of my testing needs. However what they don't do is let you get a true feel for what it's like for an end user to interact with the site due to the latency. This becomes more apparent with interactive web apps.
If Apple won't let you easy/chip to test on their browser, then just don't do it. Place a big red "please upgrade to modern browser" banner and be done with that. Of course, if client wants to sponsor testing, he can do it at his own will.
Classic example of UX nightmare: So I follow the link, I see a button that says get free VMS. I click it. I then can't figure out what I'm meant to do. I stare at some weird quickstart offer. I give up. I come back to HN, and think - how come others have managed to download their images. I go back, I realise that the button just activates a dropdown/rollup (and it's already in the dropdown state, so clicking the button rolls it up!), and then finally I get to the VM images. To be honest, It would be easier to just have an apache directory index, with folders and a load of accompanying checksums. I got there in the end.
The other thing that I failed to notice, was that this was actually a Microsoft site! Why not hang off of their domain name? How am I supposed to know this is official?
The button colour is grey. It doesn't change colour with a state change/hover. The button has a right arrow on it, not a down arrow. Which indicates to me that I'll be leaving the page. It's not obvious it will do a drop down.
Agree that it didn't help that it was a deep link.
(What I neglected to say, was that my first attempt failed also, in my 'reading' web browser. That eschews background images. But that's another issue. So I'd already repasted the link into a different browser before having further issues.)
I get the page now, I just had an issue when I first encountered it.
I actually think the second of my points was the more important - how do you trust the authenticity of the site?
Does it say that? It reads 'Select Desired Testing OS', which is an odd phrase. It could read 'Select desired testing (host) OS'. But may aswell just read 'Select host OS', as you suggest. Seems to be a classic case of Microsoft changing terminology, and just confusing everyone further down the line in the process.
You could spell out what a host OS is on a descriptive help text next to the form control.
Also noticed that there's no VMWare option under Linux - why would that be?
Plus the blue font isn't really dark enough to read.
Great to see some md5s though!
Another niggle, which I totally missed the first time is that if you select the wrong option navigate away from the page. And then use the back button - you are back to square one. Which is a good reason why this type of download page just doesn't really work.
> It reads 'Select Desired Testing OS', which is an odd phrase.
Right. I read that with the implied [for]. Even still, it's odd.
My workflow is: I already have a host OS. I desire to download a VM image running an OS on which to test my site in IE.
> Seems to be a classic case of Microsoft changing terminology, and just confusing everyone further down the line in the process.
I can't imagine there's any malintent here. Just some website editing by folks who are not immersed in the cross-platform virtualization terminology.
> You could spell out what a host OS is on a descriptive help text next to the form control.
Anyone doing virtualization ought to know what 'host' and 'guest' mean. Just use the standard terms, overexplaining it just confuses it. But that's just my own bias.
> Also noticed that there's no VMWare option under Linux - why would that be?
Probably they just didn't get around to testing that case specifically. The VMware images for other host OSes might work just fine.
> Great to see some md5s though!
Death to MD5! :-) SHA-2-256 FTW. Better yet, GPG and/or Authenticode sigs.
> Another niggle, which I totally missed the first time is that if you select the wrong option navigate away from the page. And then use the back button - you are back to square one. Which is a good reason why this type of download page just doesn't really work.
This is great -- it's about time they made these available for VirtualBox etc too, and on a proper, user-friendly page. (Previously they were just for VirtualPC, and required a bit of tricky configuration to get working in VirtualBox at least.)
I've actually been using the Windows 7 / IE9 version of this for a while. There is a nice simple install w/snapshot that I utilized on both my Ubuntu machine and my Mac. It takes a snapshot before powering the machine so once your 90 days is up, you can just roll the snapshot back.
Hi vizzah. These are all Enterprise Evaluation versions of Windows for the most part and they all expire. We recommend you download once, take a snapshot BEFORE first use, then after 90 days revert to the snapshot. Not ideal I know as you still lose any changes you did to the image but saves you downloading again and configuring. Apologies for that bit of pain.
The only thing weird I found about this, is the win8 ie10 vmware for mac on microsoft.com comes with a boot virus, or so says Avast. It reports it has Kampana-37XX. Screenshot: http://i.imgur.com/wXOu3uJ.png
I've been using VMWare Workstation for about a decade now... I've tried a few other VM platforms, and they've all not been quite as usable imho... I will say their support of ESXi updates, and pretty much dropping VMWare Server has been pretty bad.
Don't do this for web development. The browser emulations are just that, emulations, and they fail to be perfect emulations.
Which means you are likely to be fixing rendering issues and buggy behaviour in the emulated version that don't exist on the real thing, and more importantly missing issues that are evident in the real browser but not on the emulation.
It's a cognitive dissonance, you are testing a browser stack your customers won't be using.
Have any of you actually used these? To start off they are a pain to download/setup, come on Microsoft, you make the freaking OS and you can't package it any better? Second, these VM's are constantly complaining about not being activated. I understand that MS can't just rip that part of the OS out however it's a massive slap in the face to have them act like they give a shit about web developers and then have them provide sub-par VM's. I can pirate the OS and make my own (better) VM's which is really sad if you ask me. Also I have had the VM's shut down on me multiple times to go "update".
TL;DR: These VM's suck and you are better off pirating the OS and making your own VM's.
This free Honda Civic sucks, you'd be way better off stealing a Ferrari.
That's some pretty odd logic. What about buying the OS? Since you're, you know, using it for work? Is that not an option? The ROI would be pretty high, I'm guessing. If I only had the on-screen keyboard, my solution would be to buy a keyboard, not shoplift one.
What? I didn't imply accepting a gift was stealing, I said that if you got a free gift, didn't like it, and wanted something better, the obvious next step is to buy something better. Yet joshstrange's _immediate_ next step is to steal the better thing. Not to even look for a price quote, but immediately to steal it.
Normal thought pattern: "I want something decent. I will see how much it costs and perhaps purchase it."
Abnormal thought pattern: "I want something decent. I will steal it."
Why does Microsoft owe us anything? If we want to do business on Windows, and support IE, the obvious and legal thing to do is buy a copy of Windows and use it. Not bitch because they're not giving us the best possible stuff for free.
I like this because I'm interested in creating more cross-platform projects.
By that I mean, not only does this webapp work on recent versions of Internet Explorer, but a developer can easily get up and running on it using windows (as well as Linux or OS X). I don't want a situation of “you should really be using this OS to develop on this project, and not those other ones”.
I don't want to go out and pay for windows just to do this. It's not my primary OS, and it isn't going to be. But I do want to be able to say, “you can easily develop and run my app on Windows”. Having something like this from Microsoft might be just the push I need to make that happen.
Is it me or does this design make your head spin in circles, too? Not really a relevant discussion of the topic at hand, but damn... This is one of the worst designs I've experienced in a while, in a brain-is-so-confused-my-eyes-are-crossing, kind of way.
I'm pretty sure they are sourced from the same VM's.
The only notable difference is that ievms converts (or did when I tried it last) from the VirtualPC copy - MS is now allowing these for download in other formats (Parallels/VMWare/Virtualbox) without needing to convert.
I had been using these to game my Dropbox account:
1. Configure the VM up the point of signing up / downloading the client.
2. Change the PC Name & spoof a new Mac Address in the VM.
3. Sign up under a referral code.
4. Rollback to the snapshot in step 1.