Give Windows Virtual PC a Floppy Drive on Windows 7

So yes, there’s no GUI method to add a floppy drive to your VMs with Virtual PC if you’re running that on Windows 7. However the functionality is there, you just have to know how to make it work.

There are various different ways to do it, but the easiest method (I think) is to just get it to attach to your PC floppy drive (assuming you have one – I use a USB one).

To enable the VM floppy to map to your (host) PC floppy, ensure the VM is shut down (not hibernated), then go to the folder where your VM’s disk lives (the .vhd file) and you’ll also find a .vmc file in the same folder. Open this in Notepad (or similar) and find the text floppy. You’ll see a section that looks like this:


<floppy id="0">
  <pathname>
     <absolute type="string" />
     <relative type="string" />
   </pathname>
</floppy>

Just change this to the following (assuming your PC floppy is drive A:):

<floppy id="0">
   <pathname>
     <absolute type="string">A</absolute>
     <relative type="string" />
   </pathname>
</floppy>

Next time you start that VM it’ll be able to use your floppy drive. Admittedly nothing else will be able to use the floppy drive whilst that VM has it, but this may or may not be a problem, depending on what the VM is doing. I was able to boot an MS DOS 6.22 floppy after doing this.

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One Response to Give Windows Virtual PC a Floppy Drive on Windows 7

  1. rcmtech says:

    Actually this does not refresh the floppy info within the VM when the floppy disk is changed. Tried to install DOS 6.22 and it never detected disk 2 when I inserted it.
    I used the Powershell script from the bottom of the page (http://social.technet.microsoft.com/Forums/en-US/w7itprovirt/thread/62f8eaf1-23f9-497e-a431-f4a1ad643d38/#fa951c29-a6ac-4ca7-bdf8-f9431ef6bf17) which does the job nicely, and allows you to use disk images which are loads faster. Download the .ps1 file, then right-click and choose “Run with Powershell”.

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