Friday, December 26, 2008

Intrepid Ibex and virtualization

I always wanted to do virtualization on my development workstation. There are some software that doesn't get along with one another, PHP5 and 4, apache 1 and 2. The list goes on. I also wanted the fact that I can upgrade my desktop w/o fearing to break things like Oracle libraries suddenly breaks because my distro decided to change libc.

It was a bit hard last year to make it work and let alone all the hardware of 6910p to work. I tried to use vserver and kvm, it was too hard to make a custom kernel to make everything work. I didn't try Xen as its an overkill for my needs, vserver is just fine for my needs. Also I think due to Xen design and objective it simply will not support suspend and resume on a laptop. vserver isn't even really a virtualization more like jail or chroot. This time I am trying again as Intrepid server comes with kvm as its virtualization choice. When I tried kvm last year it was the best candidate for me, however whenever I forget to stop a guest machine then I suspend the laptop I will get a hard lock. This time I am trying kvm which part of Ubuntu Interpid server edition, I am running Intrepid desktop and all I had to was to install the following packages.

apt-get install ubuntu-virt-server
apt-get install kvm libvirt-bin

I was too lazy to do things by hand, I gave the gui a shot. It was pleasantly surprising easy to install and run.

apt-get install virt-manager virt-viewer

It works! its not VMware easy but it close enough. Good enough for me that it does not get in the way and I can start putting my different projects in their own virtual space. I can even suspend and resume the laptop even if I forget the virtual guest machines are still running. Now I am shifting my projects that has similar virtual machines, like java-devel, rails-devel, etc. I am using Ubuntu JeOS as my guest OS, which is pretty good.

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