Something which I recently did – as of May 17 to be precise – was, to install Windows 10 on a Virtual Machine. This is not to be confused with the use of ‘Wine’, because an Emulator is not the same thing as a VM. When using a VM, the ISO File authored by Microsoft, in this case, needs to be provided, so that Genuine Windows can install itself, in an isolated environment, that behaves exactly as a regular computer would behave, by itself.
AFAIK, this is a perfectly legal thing to do. And my perception of that is amplified, by the fact that within Windows 10, I was able to go through the Windows Store, to purchase the activation for that instance. If it was illegal, then I should have obtained a message to the effect.
Also, when Windows software runs on a VM, certain hardware can be ‘fed through’ to this ‘Guest System’, such as specific USB Devices. But, when they are, Windows relies on its own device-drivers, to be able to use them, or, on vendor-supplied device drivers. What this means is that at the raw binary level, the VM itself is forwarding the data, without attempting to reparse or analyze it in any way.
I can still get error messages, but so far, those have only come as a result of silly user errors, that would have produced the same error messages had Windows been running natively.
And, because the Guest System is genuinely Windows, I can no longer say that I have zero Windows instances running. It’s just that, for now, the Windows instance I have running, resides inside a VM and doesn’t own ‘the Real Computer’ – aka the ‘Host System’.
What I do notice is the fact, that some of the errors which I made, were due to not having used Windows for a long time.