The new image uses only about 6GB of disk space instead of 15, presumably because it doesn't contain any junk from my old hard drive. It is immeasurably faster than my 140GB image of my previous hard drive, half-of which was unreadable. Not sure how much was VM settings, Symantec, or other junk, but I think everything helped.
I deleted the old virtual hard drive image. It took hours because I had a dozen huge "snapshots" I had taken in VirtualBox, each of which took 1-20 minutes to delete. Before I started, my new 1TB drive was 60% full. Now it's only 7% full! What a disaster that was.
I currently use Windows in VirtualBox a few times a week for the following, but I work mostly in Linux:
- Photoshop CS4
- I use this a lot and it requires 1024x768 resolution for some of the dialogs to work properly (to show the Save button). Takes a lot of resources, but as much as I love GIMP, it's not a substitute for Photoshop for professional work.
- A couple of proprietary VPNs
- The nice thing about running these in a virtual machine is that it lets me check email and access the web from my primary OS while the VPN is connected.
- Citrix GoToMeeting
- Works great
- Remote Desktop Connection
- Necessary for work.
- Internet Explorer
- Necessary for work (for testing)
- Microsoft Office
- Open Office is a fantastic substitute. It changes the layout only slightly I think because the available fonts are different on Linux. I still need the real thing for presentations and testing for work.
- Firefox HTML Validator plug-in
- I really wish there was a Linux version of this!
Hopefully, over time, things like GoToMeeting and the Firefox HTML Validator will work on Linux. I'm still looking for a secure backup strategy for my entire drive.