I need to test the base code while using accommodations functions within accessibility software packages like ZoomText, MAGic, JAWS, etc. These programs do not play well together, and so must be separated. I don't have enough physical boxes, so we thought VMWare to the rescue. Now when installing in the virtual environment, JAWS continually prompts for the serial number for activation, even when it has been entered. Furthermore, the cursor splits when using the magnification feature, leaving two cursors - one the default size and one the magnified size. Obviously this is an issue with testing, as this does not occur in the local environment, only the virtual, making it challenging to see a true test result in the virtual world.

So...anyone out there attempt a similar thing, installing any of these types of packages in the virtual world? Which packages? Did you see these issues? Were there any work arounds? Any other issues found? Thanks in advance.
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This is probably more suitable in a forum dedicated for Operating System virtualization as VMware Workstation only deals with the operating system.
Answered 06/10/2011 by: nucko
Senior Purple Belt

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Just found this disclaimer on the Freedom Scientific website, relating to a different VMWare issue with keystrokes:

Disclaimer: While JAWS does not officially support VMWare and other virtual environments, customers are using these products. The information in this bulletin deals with a specific keystroke error in a normal Windows environment, and does not constitute an endorsement of using JAWS in a virtual environment. This scenario and work around has graciously been provided by a JAWS user; it has not been tested by Freedom Scientific.

I suspect that the other software titles you mention also are not supported a VMWare environment, so for a true 'real world' test physical machines must be used.


Answered 06/10/2011 by: dunnpy
Red Belt

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thanks for this.
Answered 06/10/2011 by: barbaraziel
Yellow Belt

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I agree with Dunnpy, I supported these products for a couple of years and I found that JAWS especially is very particular about the video cards it is installed with, even to the point where it would not work correctly or allow activation if it was installed with a onboard video card as opposed to a proprietary third party video card (Radeon, GeForce etc...).

I imagine your problem here has to do with the hardware abstraction used by VMWare. JAWS won't be detecting a proper video card through VM therefore your installs won't activate or function correctly. Magic and Zoomtext have similar restrictions if I remember correctly.
Answered 06/12/2011 by: rich0864
Orange Belt

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Answer this question or Comment on this question for clarity