While Parallels Desktop and VMware Fusion are undoubtedly the most popular and well-known software programs used to run alternative operating systems on Mac OS X, I tend to rely mostly on the open source tool called Virtual Box that was originally developed by Sun Microsystems. As an experiment, I decided to see how simple it would be to move an existing Windows XP virtual machine from one user account to another. Gathering instructions from various user forums, I detached the virtual machine from my old user account and then added it back to my new account using Virtual Box’s Virtual Media Manager.
When I started up Windows XP in safe mode in my new account, the OS hung on the hotcore3.sys file.
One tech forum poster suggested editing the hotcore3.sys entry in the Windows registry by booting into system using the Windows install CD. In my case, I could not make any changes to the registry from the Windows command line.
I stumbled upon the simple solution by placing my mouse pointer on top of the chipset dropdown menu that’s visible in Virtual Box’s Settings menu. A yellow popup window appeared that said that Mac OS X required use of the experimental ICH9 chipset, rather than PIIX3.
Making the configuration change triggers a warning in Virtual Box that it detects non-optimal settings on your Mac. However, since Mac OS X requires this setting to support its CoreAudio drivers, you can safely ignore the message.