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Re: [Xen-users] virtualbox vs. xen - ease of domU installation

  • To: Mark Williamson <mark.williamson@xxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • From: Nico Kadel-Garcia <nkadel@xxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Sat, 17 May 2008 00:52:17 +0100
  • Cc: xen-users@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx, Miles Fidelman <mfidelman@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • Delivery-date: Fri, 16 May 2008 16:46:56 -0700
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  • List-id: Xen user discussion <xen-users.lists.xensource.com>

Mark Williamson wrote:
On Thursday 15 May 2008, Miles Fidelman wrote:

I've just started playing with Virtualbox - and boy do they make
installing virtual machines easy.  Download an .iso of a netinstall CD,
point Virtualbox at it, and you have a window that behaves just like a
normal install.  Worked like a charm with both Debian Sarge and Etch
images - doesn't seem to require any special bits in the guest O/Ss.

I did all my playing so far with Virtualbox running under OpenSolaris.
No problem getting Debian to run, but serious problems with the BSD
varients, so far.

Although you still have to be booted into a Xenified kernel, the virt-manager app developed primarily by RedHat and shipped in Fedora, RHEL and CentOS makes installing Xen guests (all HVM guests, and Redhat-like PV guests) similarly friendly. They were also working on support for Suse PV guests, although I don't know if that came to anything.

Setting up Xen does lack some of the simplicity of being able to install something that acts more like a "normal application", though.


It's not that good. At last look, it has *no* support for configuring floppy or CD access at install time, no support for multiple virtual or physical disks, and no support for using using a Dom0 installed kernel in a DomU, as has been supported in Xen since its creation. It needs quite a lot of work, and the version in RHEL always lags significantly behind that of Fedora. Virt-manager is little better, and does not allow modification of a guest domain without shutting it down, which Xen itself *DOES* allow with the xm command.

I hope many of these issues have been addressed in FC9, but these sorts of issues are why I'm hoping for someone good with Perl to do a decent Webmin utility.

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