This is more of a request for discussion than an actual problem that I need solved, but I will generously award points for anyone who participates.
I figured out a long time ago that if I choose "Local Only" as my networking option, you can fire up two Virtual PCs at the same time and they can "see each other". I can, for example, install an Oracle server on one, oracle client on another and simulate a client-server environment that I can experiment in. I've even successfully set up three-tier environments in this manner (db, mid, client).
What I'm finding annoying, however, it that it just "doesn't always work". For some reason, every now and then I'll fire them up and they just can't see each other. All I do is shut them down and restart them and then they work - no changing settings or anything.
I've found that starting the database server first, then waiting patiently for it to completely initialize, THEN starting the client(s) has the highest probability of success.
Has anyone else experimented with using Virtual PC to set up multiple-tier environments? If so, have you seen the same things I'm seeing?