wNieds, to BC Forums!
Yes, VirtualBox is indeed great VM software, is what I use & recommend to others. Even for those with 8.1 Pro where Hyper-V machines can be setup, this may still be a better option, as Hyper-V can be buggy on home desktop or notebook installs. The worst part being some type of funky playing around with my CPU, rather than a dual core, 4 thread CPU, in the Windows Task Manager with Hyper-V enabled, it was showing as one core with 2 threads, on both the 8.1 Pro install, as well as the 7 Pro install in the same drive.
While on the other drive, Linux Mint (version 16 at the time) & Vista on the other drive were reporting the CPU as should, two cores & 4 threads.
It's also obvious that Microsoft doesn't aim their VM solution to home users, otherwise there would be a far more friendly interface, as well as some helpful hints for the home/student user. Normally when a Web page of Hyper-V exists, Windows Server 2012 is the OS being spoken of. They act as though their 8.1 base doesn't exist & always has. I also get lots of MS Springboard email, and again, when Hyper-V is mentioned, so is Windows Server 2012. The only time that MS boasted about Hyper-V capabilities on Windows, was during the Windows 8 Pro promo launch, when they were trying to sell the OS's for $40.
Windows Virtual PC w/XP Mode was the best that MS offered home/student & enthusiast users for VM software, however now XP is unsupported & at best, this software supports 32 bit VM's. Not sure if it'll run the Windows Technical Preview or not, haven't heard anyone say. At any rate, it's not as robust & much less control.
VMWare Player used to be good, but haven't used it since before the Windows 8 Previews came along, that's been sometime back & don't know how the product stacks up today. One way to get it w/out filling out a registration form, is by getting it from the File Hippo site. One of the few software selections left that still supports install on Windows 2000 (click onto the Technical tab for details).