Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Virtualization in 2009.06 (Part 2, VirtualBox)

To continue the "getting started" tutorials on virtualization on OSOL 2009.06 we will take a look at VirtualBox. VirtualBox might be a good Solution for remote desktop installations, fully virtualized machines with graphical console over the network. As with the previous posts this one will be focused on how to deploy it on your server. If you run virtualbox on your desktop it is probably easier to use the supplied GUI, which is on pair with the VMWare workstation GUI.

VirtualBox only supports full virtualization, so the performance will not be as good as a paravirtualized xVM domain or Solaris zone, but it works good for graphical access to virtual machines over network with lighter workloads.

Install VirtualBox

VirtualBox is not hosted in the standard OSOL repositories, it is in the extra repository (along with flash, JavaFX SDK and others). There is some minor hassle to get access to this repository, you will ned to register an account with sun then download and install certificates. You can register here and download the certificate, there are install instructions on the site, but here is the procedure:
$ pfexec mkdir -m 0755 -p /var/pkg/ssl
$ pfexec cp -i ~/Desktop/OpenSolaris_extras.key.pem /var/pkg/ssl
$ pfexec cp -i ~/Desktop/OpenSolaris_extras.certificate.pem /var/pkg/ssl
$ pfexec pkg set-authority \
-k /var/pkg/ssl/OpenSolaris_extras.key.pem \
-c /var/pkg/ssl/OpenSolaris_extras.certificate.pem \
-O extra
Now install VirtualBox:
$ pfexec pkg install virtualbox virtualbox/kernel
Create virtual machines

Create and install a virtual machine:
$ cd /opt/VirtualBox
$ VBoxManage createvm --name "WinXP" --register
$ VBoxManage modifyvm "WinXP" --memory "512MB" \
--acpi on --boot1 dvd --nic1 nat
$ VBoxManage createhd --filename "WinXP.vdi" \
--size 5000 --remember
$ VBoxManage modifyvm "WinXP" --hda "WinXP.vdi"
$ VBoxManage controlvm "WinXP" dvdattach \
$ VBoxHeadLess --startvm "WinXP"

Connect to the server with an RDP client and perform the installation. There are free RDP Clients available for most Operating systems:
Solaris/OpenSolaris/*BSD: rdekstop (pkg install SUNWrdesktop)
MacOS X: Remote Desktop Connection
After the installation is done, the guest can be controlled with VBoxManage. VBoxManage can control all aspects of the guest, snapshots, power, USB sound. Here are a few basic commands:
Start: VBoxHeadLess -s winxp
Poweroff: VboxManage controlvm WinXP poweroff
Reset: VboxManage controlvm WinXP reset
If you want to install the VirtualBox Guest additions, just inject the DVD:

$ VBoxManage controlvm "WinXP" dvdattach \

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