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"Excuse me I'm trying to log on using Internet Explore in Windows 95
on my Macintosh-can you help me?"

A Review of Virtual PC 1.0 for the Power Macintosh
by Steve Webber

Yes, I made that call to the help desk of my Internet provider. Actually, I was able to figure out the problem on my own before the help desk returned my call thanks to the very helpful people at Connectix's free technical support (800 number and e-mail).

I have used Windows 3.1 and both WordPerfect and Microsoft Word for Windows and other DOS programs for years. With increased exposure to Windows 95 I opted to buy Virtual PC (VPC) for my Mac 6500/250 just to better understand it. Having worked with both Mac and PC systems and programs since 1987 I've been amazed and frustrated by the similarities and the differences of both.

When my VPC arrived I tore opened the box and booted without extensions to prepare to install from the CD reported to be enclosed in the package. Along with the well-written and useful manual (+/-100 pages which also includes instructions VPC for Windows 3.1) was another package containing an official "Windows 95 Manual and Software license with CD." I couldn't find anything else.

I opened the Windows package and I found was the Windows 95 only CD. I telephoned Connectix to report my missing software. My call was promptly answered and I was transferred to customer service where I was put on hold. Standing, I noticed a white square envelope peeking from beneath my keyboard the missing software. Nevermind click.

I had already rebooted my Mac since starting without extensions was unnecessary, I popped the seal on my newly found software slipped it in the CD ROM drive on my Mac and clicked install. Wow! In seconds a 250 Megabyte hard drive image with Windows 95 installed appeared on my hard disk. I quit the installer, double clicked the VPC icon and in minutes Windows 95 was running on my Macintosh. I popped in a Christmas Card attached to an e-mail I had received from my cousin and watched as "Christmas Night" played on my Mac just as it had on the Compaq 486 I was using at the office. This in approximately one hour from opening the box. I am impressed.

Following this initial good impression I proceeded to have a number of setbacks not, in my opinion, the fault of Virtual PC. My 6500 was afflicted with the dreaded "flashing ?" disease until I downloaded Diskset-up 3.1.1. After running Norton Utilities 3.5 VPC started acting weird and prompted a call to very helpful customer service people at Connectix, reinstalling, tinkering etc. I'm waiting for my update to Mac OS 8.1 to arrive and some more memory.

Rated: 

Steve Webber February 6, 1998

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