How To Improve Virtual Machine Performance

A virtual machine (VM) is like a physical computer except that it is implemented through software rather than hardware. It consists of a physical machine called the “host” and a VM called the “guest” or “client”. The physical machine uses an operating system, for example, Windows. The VM also uses an operating system which could be Windows, Linux, or possibly others.

A VM can be very useful. It can be used as a “sandbox” to try a new program without exposing your host environment to possible damage. There are other possible uses. For example, I use it to run Windows XP. Why? Because I have two old programs that use Windows XP to run but were never upgraded by the vendors to run on Windows 7 or beyond, but I still want to run them. (One is the CreataCard 3 card-making program and the other is a Panasonic program for managing the contact list in our wireless home telephone system.)

I found that launching the VM as well as the running of programs in my VM environment was much slower than in the host machine. To improve the performance of the VM, I use a Batch (“.bat”) file to launch the VM. I happen to use the free VMware Player to create my VM, but what I’m about to describe should be similar to any other VM. In my case, the performance improvement was dramatic.

How To Implement Improved Performance

  1. Copy the BAT file lines below and paste them into Windows Notepad:

: This BAT file starts your virtual machine and then sets its priority to “realtime”
CD “C:\Program Files (x86)\VMware\VMware Player\”
start vmplayer.exe
wmic process where name=”vmplayer.exe” CALL setpriority “realtime”

  1. Save the file anywhere you want to keep it with the name filename.bat (changing “filename” to anything you want)
  2. Note that unless you are using VMware you will need to make these changes:

A. Change “C:\Program Files (x86)\VMware\VMware Player\” to the folder location of your VM executable

B. Change the two “vmplayer.exe” executable names to your VM “.exe” program name

C. Save it and close Windows Notepad

  1. To create the link to this “.bat” file, right-click on the file while you drag it to the location where you want the link to reside. Release the mouse button and choose “Create shortcuts here”.
  2. You will need to make this change to the link you just created:

A. Right-click on the link and choose “Properties”
B. In the “Shortcut” tab, click on “Advanced”
C. Click on the “Run as administrator” line so it has a checkmark
D. Click “OK” and then click “OK” in the “Shortcut” tab

Now, you should notice a performance improvement whenever you use this shortcut to your VM.

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