Microsoft has refuted claims that .Net Server and XP Pro are interchangeable, after an old program called NTSwitch was shown to be able to change a computer running XP Pro into a .Net server.
The application has been on the internet for years and purports to change a few registry settings within NT/Windows 2000/XP that can turn a server into a workstation and vice versa.
But a Microsoft spokesman denied that a computer that was previously a workstation could become a server "with a flick of a switch".
"It may give the appearance of looking like a server," said the spokesman, "because there are registry settings in the shell to make things say 'I am a server' on reboot. But it patently isn't a server, it doesn't have the technology."
But Sephiroth on web forum ADTW (http://220.127.116.11/~admin20/modules.php?name=News&file=article&sid=38) suggests that XP Pro and .Net Server are a single operating system with two modes.
"I attempted this on .Net Server and have successfully converted Build 3615 to Windows XP Professional," Sephiroth said.
"Using an app called NTSwitch, .Net now thinks it is a workstation OS, in this case, Windows XP Pro. All of the features of XP that were disabled, such as fast user switching, the welcome screen, and DirectX now work perfectly," he added.
Sephiroth also said that another user tried turning XP Pro into a .Net server and "gained an extreme amount of performance". But he found that on further testing, the erstwhile workstation developed a nasty memory leak when running in server mode.
Norton Antivirus 2002 would not install on .Net server as it is "not compatible with a server OS", but after running the program that turned it into a workstation it would, Sephiroth further claimed.
He also said a friend was able to install XP Plus on .Net Server, as well as Partition Magic 7, following the changeover.
Hungarian website 03am said: "It's well-known that Workstation and Server environments are virtually identical. The operating system decides which 'flavour' to run in, based on two registry values."
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