Windows 8 Developer Preview requires a clean install. If you don’t want to wipe your computer or install Windows 8 on a separate partition or drive, you should consider installing Windows 8 as a Virtual Machine (VM.)
This guide will show you how to:
- Install Virtual Box & Set up Windows 8 VM
- Install Windows 8 in Virtual Box
- Oracle VM VirtualBox
- Windows 8 Developer Preview ISO file (32-bit or 64-bit)
- Windows Live ID (for best testing experience, sign up here if you don’t have one)
- Internet Connection (for best testing experience)
Besides that, also make sure that your computer has the Virtualization Technology (VT-x/AMD-V) activated in the BIOS. Proceed to the installation if you are ready with everything.
Install VirtualBox & Set up Windows 8 VM
1. Download VirtualBox and install it.
2. Open VirtualBox and click New.
3. Go through the wizard to create a new Virtual Machine. Below screenshot shows the parameter used for the virtual machine. Do note that the minimum requirement of RAM for Windows 8 is 1GB for 32-bit and 2GB for 64-bit.
Now Virtual Machine is ready.
Install Windows 8 in VirtualBox
Once the virtual machine is ready, click Settings and start modifying the settings in order to install Windows 8 Developer Preview. All the screenshot below shows the settings that I used during the setup.
This part might be tricky. By default, the VDI file generated will be mounted as a SATA HDD. However, if it is treated as a SATA HDD, Windows 8 will not be able to initiate the installation and BSOD (A very cute one) occurs. So the workaround is to mount the VDI file under the IDE controller, this way Windows 8 Developer Preview install perfectly.
Also under Storage, mount the ISO file containing Windows 8 Developer Preview that you just downloaded.
4. Once everything is set, start installing Windows 8! The installation process is pretty much similar to the one in Windows 7, so nothing much to cover there. When Windows 8 started up, you will need to enter your Windows Live ID and password.
It is worth noting that the guest addition for VirtualBox doesn’t work in Windows 8, therefore the resolution of the virtual machine is limited.
Other famous Virtual Machine software such as VMWare and Windows Virtual PC are not able to install Windows 8 Developer Preview at the moment. So if you are really interested to try it out, follow our guide to install it, and let us know your opinion on Windows 8.
Good luck and enjoy!