Linked by Thom Holwerda on Thu 7th May 2009 18:01 UTC
Windows Windows XP Mode, the virtualisation tool currently in beta for Windows 7, only works on processors with virtualisation extensions, known as AMD-V and Intel VT-x. Microsoft made this clear from the get-go, but still various news websites regurgitated it as "news" yesterday that some Intel processors do not support XPM. Twenty-four hours down the road, and Intel had a few things to say about this.
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RE: Comment by Kroc
by 7q2z3lp02@sneakemail on Thu 7th May 2009 20:38 UTC in reply to "Comment by Kroc"
7q2z3lp02@sneakemail
Member since:
2009-05-07

Yes, the BIOS disables the processor virtualization feature on most Intel and AMD platforms that could support the processor virtualization. The desk visit is for the IT person to change the setting in the BIOS setup program.

Remember the Blue Pill attack? The good people over at Invisible Things Lab published a virtualization hack that can take over a machine at a level where anything running in an OS would have a difficult task of detecting the attack.

In a quick reaction, the processor, BIOS, and system vendors decided to disable the feature by default. To enable it, the person holding the system has to hit DEL, F2, ESC, or whatever BIOS Setup key is defined and turn the feature on. Sorry.

If those pesky virus writers would go away, the vendors could ship systems that have all of the security features disabled.

This setting is done in legacy BIOSs, EFI BIOSs, and should be done in boot loaders / linux BIOSs. Don't forget the major purpose of the pre-OS firmware is to get the hardware ready for the OS. All of the pre-OS firmware has to support some of the older interfaces if you want to boot anything other than an Apple OS.

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