When you’re working with as many different pieces of software automated basis as I am, you don’t really want to inundate your system with a bunch of orphaned registry entries and ghost software folders that have been tried and partially removed.
What you want to be able to do is load software in a test environment. You want to have the software load onto a temporary system that if any changes are made to the environment they’re not carried over to your personal PC.
The repercussions of testing software on your personal PC can be severe. You never know when someone’s going to create a malicious piece of software or if the software is going to perform in an adverse way.
Sun Microsystems provides a perfect solution for people in my position or for people who like to test or play with software on a regular basis. Sun Microsystems calls the solution VirtualBox.
The installation of VirtualBox is painless. A software package installs upon the operating system and doesn’t require the operating system to be rebooted in order for the software package to work.
Virtual box loads as any other software package would, you can choose from Linux, Windows or any other operating system that you want. You can load the operating system of choice simply by installing it as you would any other PC or you can download the virtual environments already created for you [VDI].
There’s obviously benefits to being able to download a VDI file; you don’t have to load the operating system manually. A VDI file is already preconfigured all you have to do is simply import the VDI file into VirtualBox and then launch it.
My personal experience with VirtualBox allows me to run three different operating systems for the pure purpose of curiosity. ReactOS, Ubuntu and the Windows XP Professional. This allows me to test applications in three different environments without having me reboot my system to enter each one of them.
I have windows XP for the traditional testing
I have ReactOS simply test of some simpler applications will run on a free and open source operating system that looks close to the GUI of Windows.
In closing, my recommendation stands, don’t test software on your personal PC, use the test environment, see how it works for you, make a decision and decide whether or not you want to apply the software to your personal PC or not. Testing doesn’t have to be done with fear of it affecting your personal PC.
Thanks for reading!