A beta version of Chrome OS is available as VMX/VMDK image for vmware or virtualbox and live cd. Chrome OS is a OpenSuSe based operating system around the Google Chrome browser.
Steps to test VM image of chrome os beta
- Download VMDK image
- Extract tar.gz File to standard folder of vmware
- Start vmware server
- Choose from “Virtual machine” menu “add Virtual machine to inventory”
- Choose VMX file inside extracted image of chrome os
- Upgrade Virtual machine to newest “hardware” by choosing link on right side from the vm summary page
- Remove Network Connection from VM and Add new one with “Add Hardware” and type “Network Adapter” with “Nat” mode
- Boot VM and cornfirm warning about IDE geometry and scsi controller
- Click on “Make Goggle chrome default browser” and confirm dialog
- Click on computer button (down left side) and click under status on network connection
- Enter root password: root
- confirm warning about network manager with ok
- Choose under “Global Options” network setup method “traditional method with ifup”
- Go to “Overview” tab and click on “edit” button below
- click on “next” button
- go back to “global options” and change back to “user controlled with networkmanager”
- Reboot machine by clicking on computer and shutdown with type reboot
- After reboot you can surf with google chrome without any problem
Windows 7 Home Premium has no XP Mode Feature like in Pro or Ultimate Edition to run an Windows XP virtual machine seamless. Home Premium can be upgraded by Anytime Upgrade within Windows to Professional or Ultimate (90$* or 140$*). You need at least Professional Version for XP Mode. So i looked for alternatives. Under Windows XP was VMWare server 2.x my first choice without seamless mode. Seamless Mode made VM windows be available in host OS as “normal” windows without the rest of the VM OS. One Alternative is VMWare Workstation 7 with seamless mode (176€*). Paralells has currently an beta version available with Coherence (seamless) feature. Virtualbox as open source alternative has seamless mode too. You need only to install the guest additions of virtualbox, reboot after installation and call from menu “seamless mode”.
So i give Virtualbox a try and installed the current 3.0.10 version under Windows 7. VirtualBox can work with VMware VMDK Hard disks out of the box.
Steps to convert from VMware to Virtualbox:
- Start VMware image under VMware
- Uninstall VMware Tools inside VM
- Shutdown VM
- Open DOS command shell in VM folder
- set path variable to include VMWare server folder: set path=;%PATH%
- convert splitted VM hard disk to single file: vmware-vdiskmanager -r source_multiples.vmdk -t 2 single_file.vmdk (use ” to surround file name if file name contains spaces)
- copy new single_file.vmdk and single_file-flat.vmdk to \harddisks on host os with virtualbox
- Start VirtualBox under host OS
- Open in file menu “Virtual media manager”
- Go to “Hard Disks” tab
- Click on Add Button and choose single_file.vmdk
- Close dialog with OK button
- Click on “New” button to create a new VM
- Click on “Next” button
- Enter name for new VM and choose operation system including version (in my example Win_vista” as name, “Microsoft Windows” as OS and “Windows Vista” as version)
- Set memory to a suitable value (on my machine i prefer 512MB for good enough performance)
- On the next page choose “Use existing hard disk” and select from Drop down the old VMware hard disk image
- Click on Finish
- Open Settings of new VM to correct problems with different hard ware in VMware and VirtualBox
- Go to System => Motherboard and “enable IO APIC”
- a had an scsci lsi logic controller under VMware: Go to “Hard Disks” and “Enable Additional Controller” including selection of “SCSI (Lsilogic)”s
- Start new VM
- Install Virtualbox guest additions from vm window menu under “Devices”
- reboot vm
- Start for example a IE windows inside vm and call from “Machine” menu “seamless mode”
Currently that doesn’t seems to work with windows vista. Another VM in virtualbox with windows XP Professional works as expected in seamless mode.
Keep in mind that such a migration with Windows Vista as guest os needs another activation because of changed multiple hardware components.
Another possibility is to install the unofficial Virtual PC 6.1 for windows 7 from the knowledge base (32bit / 64bit). As described here you see in the windows 7 start menu the entries of the installed programs under the xp vm to start them directly in seamless mode. Comparing to the windows 7 XP mode their is the requirement for a separate windows xp license for a windows home or starter host os. Windows 7 professional or ultimate include such a license for a virtual windows xp on the same machine. Virtual PC needs a Virtualization hardware support like intel VT-X or AMD-V. The installation of Virtual PC fails if the processor and mainboard don’t fit to this requirement.
Startmenu entry of Virtual PC
Start installed Apps inside XP VM from Windows 7
Seamless started XP VM Application under Windows 7
*Price are only snapshots from the manufacturer websites without any guarantee and only provided to compare the possibilities.
Microsoft has for free the Virtual Server or Virtual PC 2007 SP 1 as virtualization software. I wanted to test Microsoft Windows 2003 R2 Server. On the Virtual Appliance Marketplace at VMware is only a VHD from Microsoft available. A VHD is the Microsoft vm image type. I installed the Microsoft Virtual Server and had no luck to start the vhd image successfully. Virtual PC 2007 works instead. I can start the VM and configure this vm server as active directory, DNS and WINS server like described in this howto. The networking functionality in Microsoft Virtual Server/PC is a pain in my ass. For active directory and dns server is a fixed ip configured inside the vm. No clue on which ip i can reach my vm from the host system. Sun virtualbox works in that aspect more like expected. You can switch between NAT and hostonly mode. With the host only networking mode has the VM a fixed ip inside the host system. So far so good. I tested this with a ubuntu 9.04 server as guest os inside virtualbox. For updates you need to shutdown, reconfigure to use NAT and start the vm again. In NAT mode is the vm only accessible via the virtualbox window. You have to define each port manually if you want to access the NAT vm from outside the virtualbox. Typically i use such a vm ubuntu server as subversion, maven artifactory, … server for development. VMware server 2.x works for me like expected. NAT networking to have internet access from the guest os and full access on all ports from the hostsystem. The guest os see a DHCP networking interface and the host os has a fixed ip to access the vm. So how do i get the 30 days trial edition from Microsoft Windows 2003 server get to run inside VMware server? After setting up the server inside Virtual PC you had to remove the Virtual Machine additions via the menu. This additions are not available as software package inside the software overview in windows 2003 server. Now shutdown the guest os and close virtual pc. With the VMWare vCenter Converter 3.0.3 (Starter Edition) you can convert the VHD to a VMX image for VMWare Server or Player. Select in the last step of the wizard to remove all checkpoints inside the guest os, to install VMWare tools and to setup the networking interface (NAT on one instead of two nic). The VHD image has 1,5 GB and needs on my laptop round about 1h to convert. After that i can start VMWare server and register this new guest os image. The converter has set the type correct to MS Windows 2003 server 32bit. A little bit annoying is that my bluetooth connected mouse works perfect inside Virtual PC but not out of the box inside the VMWare window 🙁 So i grabbed my old usb mouse to have a running mouse. With the Sysinternals ADExplorer i can examine my new active directory from my host os. Inside eclipse 3.5 is Apache Directory Studio a good choice to to access the AD via LDAP.
Seems to be an easy step to upgrade my local vmware server to the current version. VMWare server 2 changed the administration tool to a web interface like the one from the GSX or ESX server. First step is to uninstall the old vmware server and reboot. The download took a bit longer then before. Nearly 600mb comparing to 150mb for a 1.0.7 server install package for windows. You can change the ports of the administration web interface during installation. I leave this settings to default but changed that the server will not automatically started during windows boot. In the next screen is the possibility to change the default folder of vmware for images. I changed this to my existing folder of vmware server 1.0.6. Like before you have after installation a shortcut to the vmware server in the quicklaunch and on the desktop.
Firefox was a really a pain in the ass as browser for the web interface of beta 1 of vmware server 2. The download page now mention for Beta 2:
Firefox 3 as a supported browser for the management interface.
The icon open https://<hostname>:8333/ui/ as default url. Firefox 3 complains that the ssl certificate is self signed. You must click the link at the bottom to “add the exception” and the “add exception” button. The upcoming dialog request to get the certificate and let you after this download “confirm the security exception”.
Now the login screens ask for the credentials. Good question. The old native admin tool simply ask to login locally without any credentials. During installation where no user created or asked to define. Vmware use the local user database of windows as authentication provider. So define a new local user with admin rights or use a existing one to login.
My main vm image is a ubuntu server 8.04 with just a text console. Vmware use own linux modules for fast networking, folder sharing,… So i tried to upgrade my existing vmware-tools. Just start the vm and click the link to “install vmware tools”. It connects the virtual cdrom to readonly device with the install packages. Enter “mount /dev/cdrom /mnt/cdrom” inside the vm to copy install package to the tmp folder. You have to copy the *.tar.gz install package because ubuntu doesn’t work with RPMs like OpenSuse. The extracted folder contains the vmware-tools-install.pl script. Starting the install as root with ./vmware-tools-instal.pl or sudo ./vmware-tools-install.pl produce a error. VMware tools recognise the old kernel modules and stop the installation. The error message prints the name of the modules like vmxnet. So use “modprobe -v vmxnet” to get the path to the *.ko file. Delete it with rm and do this for all mentioned modules. Delete afterwards the old vmware settings by calling “rm -rf /etc/vmware*”. Now you can call the vmware-tools-install script to install successfully the kernel modules. Reboot the vm to use the new modules. Now you can see in the web interface e.g. the ip of the running vm.