Microsoft has released a pre-built, pre-configured Windows 7 VHD (Virtual Hard Disk) for Hyper-V Server which allows user to instantly mount and run the virtual machine. The VHD is of Windows 7 Enterprise version and is for a user to test it free of cost for 90 days. Windows 7 Enterprise edition is almost equal to Windows 7 Ultimate edition except that it’s targeted at corporate and business users, and requires activation via KMS or MAK, both available through volume licensing distribution channels.
“Guidelines on usage: You have 10 days to activate the product. If not activated within 10 days, the system will shut down once every hour until activated. The 90-day Trial is the full working version of the Windows 7 Enterprise, the version most of you will be working with in your corporate environment. It will not require a product key (it is embedded with the download). The 90-day Trial will shut down once every hour when you have reached the end of the 90-day evaluation period. The 90-day Trial is offered for a limited time and in limited quantity. The OS activation will be available through March 31, 2010, while supplies last,” Microsoft noted.
The free Windows 7 90-Day Evaluation VHD is available from Microsoft Download Center (Genuine Windows Validation is required to download). You can also download the 3 complete parts of the VHD images using the following direct download links:
Direct download link also available from Softpedia.
After downloading, run the executable to extract the VHD image to a folder named Windows7Fullx86Ent90Days. This folder will contain all the files necessary to install the evaluation image. You can now add the VHD package as a new virtual machine to your Hyper-V installation using Hyper-V Manager. You can also configure the virtual networks to allow LAN and WAN access.
Since, the free Windows 7 copy has been packaged as a VHD Virtual Hard Disk file, it will run in all of the virtualization products from Microsoft, including client-side solutions such as Windows Virtual PC. However, users will not be able to get the full Windows 7 experience on client-side virtualization solutions from Microsoft. The reason for this is Windows Virtual PC disables Aero and doesn’t support 64-bit (x64) host platforms. Microsoft recommends testing the Windows 7 VHD on Windows Server 2008 Hyper-V, Microsoft Hyper-V Server 2008, or Windows Server 2008 Hyper-V R2, Microsoft Hyper-V Server 2008 R2.
The 90-day Windows 7 trial is offered for a limited time and in limited quantity. The OS activation will be available through March 31, 2010 or while supplies last.