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To VPC or not?

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Hi all,
I have a isssue that I need help with please.

I am a single mom with 2 kids and only one computer,
a Dell P4 with 1.3GhZ CPU and 256KB RDRAM, running Window XP Pro SP2. The Hard drive is partitioned into 5 different partitions:
C:==for the OS only;
D:==for application programs, MS Office, Nero, etc.;
E:==for temp files & TIF's;
F:==for my documents, music, pictures, etc.;
G:==for future use, unused at this time.

It was done this way by a friend to make it easy for me to backup my data & such and to make whole system backup easy. I use Acronis True Image to make backup images of each partition as necessary.

I do not have a problem with my kids using the computer but lately they have been doing stuff that seems to mess it up - they use Kazza and Emule to do P2P file sharing and such with their friends and others. I have been told that those applications can really mess up a system and infect it with all kinds of stuff.

I want to know which of the following scenarios would be better for me (and keep me from killing the kids). :blink:

1.) Install a second copy of Windows XP Pro to the unused partition "G", so they can do what they want (mostly surfing and these P2P programs), and I don't have to worry about it infecting the other Operating system. I would be interested in knowing how to keep this second OS from writing anything to the other partitions if I do not want it to though?? Some type of file sharing?? *** Please comment as necessary. ***
After I install this 2nd OS and update it with all hotfixes, etc., I would make an image of it and save it to CD/DVD's so if they really mess it up I could just reinstall from the image (which is pretty fast), and they would be back to where it started from.

2.) Use the above scenario but with the addition of MS Virtual PC and have the 2nd copy of XP Pro running inside VPC? But remember, this PC only has 256KB of memory and it is really too expensive for me to upgrade it as my friend says RDRAM is costly.

3.) Use as is (with only one instance of Windows XP Pro) but install a program called "SANDBOXIE", $20.00 shareware, http://www.sandboxie.com/faq.php and have the kids run their P2P programs and do their surfing from within this program? Not certain if this program is a finished product or a work in progress?

The cost of the 2nd copy of Windows XP Pro is not an issue as I already have an extra copy, and I also already have a paid copy of MS VPC, I hear it is now free from Microsoft.

Thank you for you time and I anxiously await all comments and suggestions. :whistling:


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Hello SweetNutting...

Just as an alternative idea, have a look at GreenBorder. If you get it by July 28th, it's free for a year (usually $50 a year). This might be the best solution with the situation you are in and it will automatically run on the IE browser any time it's opened. I've used it for only a short time, but it seems to work just as advertised.

See what you think...

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