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Old 12-29-2008, 04:55 PM   #1
Sam Hobbs
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Installing from a virtual machine install


I will be installing Linux to learn about it and to do Linux C++ development.

I have a 1 GB partition I intend to install Linux into. I also have a copy of Damn Small Linux (DSL) on a flash drive that works, at least in a virtual machine. My primary OS is Windows Vista.

What I think I will do is to install a Debian distribution (I am open to suggestion) that I can execute in a virtual machine that is executed as needed from within Vista. In other words, I want something installed on the hard drive instad of the flash drive and that is more than DSL.

Can I install into the hard drive using the existing DSL executing in a VM (in other words, without booting from a CD)? I don't need detailed instructions but if someone can suggest what keywords to use, it is difficult for me to know what direction to go and what to read. I am happy to read instructions but I will appreciate some hints about what to read.

Last edited by Sam Hobbs; 12-29-2008 at 05:05 PM. Reason: Clarification
 
Old 12-29-2008, 05:36 PM   #2
Junior Hacker
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I regularly wipe off my Windows XP partition that I install Vmware onto as Windows becomes buggy due to bloating and the likes.
I rebuild the partition and load an image of the Window's original fresh installation and reinstall Vmware.
I also store my VMs in another drive/partition other than the one containing Windows, so they are still in the exact shape they were in before rebuilding Windows. I'll make a new folder in that drive to house the VMs after importing them into Vmware in the new installation, then delete the originals that were used in the old installation.
I'm not using that system right now, but I believe you import VMs through the Vmware tab after starting the software suite. You should be able to do the same by importing from the flash drive onto the hard drive. When importing, find the .vmdk file on the flash drive and keep all settings as is.
 
Old 12-29-2008, 05:46 PM   #3
onebuck
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Hi,
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sam Hobbs View Post
I will be installing Linux to learn about it and to do Linux C++ development.

I have a 1 GB partition I intend to install Linux into. I also have a copy of Damn Small Linux (DSL) on a flash drive that works, at least in a virtual machine. My primary OS is Windows Vista.

What I think I will do is to install a Debian distribution (I am open to suggestion) that I can execute in a virtual machine that is executed as needed from within Vista. In other words, I want something installed on the hard drive instad of the flash drive and that is more than DSL.

Can I install into the hard drive using the existing DSL executing in a VM (in other words, without booting from a CD)? I don't need detailed instructions but if someone can suggest what keywords to use, it is difficult for me to know what direction to go and what to read. I am happy to read instructions but I will appreciate some hints about what to read.
I think the 1GB will be pushing things even for DSL if you plan on doing development. To store on the local then you should increase the size of the partition or plan on storing things on another media.

I like 'VirtualBox' and you could use it with the 'DSL' iso stored and launch from the vm manager. Or just do a normal install to virtualbox, lot of help within the application. You could look at the 'User Manual(pdf)' or 'VirtualBox User HOWTOs'.

These links and others can be found at 'Slackware-Links'. More than just SlackwareŽ links!
 
Old 12-30-2008, 10:28 AM   #4
Sam Hobbs
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I would have replied sooner but I did not receive notification of replies and I assumed I would. I also assume I can modify my settings or whatever so I receive notifications and I am not asking how to do that.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Junior Hacker View Post
I regularly wipe off my Windows XP partition that I install Vmware onto as Windows becomes buggy due to bloating and the likes.
I rebuild the partition and load an image of the Window's original fresh installation and reinstall Vmware.
I also store my VMs in another drive/partition other than the one containing Windows, so they are still in the exact shape they were in before rebuilding Windows.
If I understand what you are saying then I can't do that. I cannot affect my current Windows installation. A major requirement for me is to add Linux without affecting Windows.
I need to read about VMs. As I (think I) said, I assume I will use qemu. After I become familiar with it I might explore other VMs. So perhaps that is the first thing I should do.

I do not currently have two available partitions. I know that there is software available that can create multiple partitions within partitions but I am trying to avoid doing things like that. I will install qemu in a Windows partition if that is possible; I think it is.

I probably misunderstood what you meant when you said "wipe off my Windows XP partition". You probably did not mean that; I am taking that out of context.

So are you suggesting that I install qemu in a partition separate from Windows and separate from Linux? If so then I will investigate if I can but I might not do that. I appreciate the suggestion to do that.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Junior Hacker View Post
I'll make a new folder in that drive to house the VMs after importing them into Vmware in the new installation, then delete the originals that were used in the old installation.
I'm not using that system right now, but I believe you import VMs through the Vmware tab after starting the software suite. You should be able to do the same by importing from the flash drive onto the hard drive. When importing, find the .vmdk file on the flash drive and keep all settings as is.
Thank you for all that. I don't understand it but hopefully it will become clear after I read more.

Probably the suggestion "find the .vmdk file on the flash drive" is very helpful; it is the type of thing that might be difficult to understand from the documentation since my situation is different from situations the documentation is written for.

Although my situation is different, I think it is also common enough that hopefully this information will be beneficial for others too.
 
Old 12-30-2008, 10:41 AM   #5
Sam Hobbs
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I deleted the message that was here.

Last edited by Sam Hobbs; 12-30-2008 at 10:42 AM.
 
Old 12-30-2008, 10:56 AM   #6
Sam Hobbs
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Quote:
Originally Posted by onebuck View Post
I think the 1GB will be pushing things even for DSL if you plan on doing development. To store on the local then you should increase the size of the partition or plan on storing things on another media.
I will do that if I need to.

I did use Unix a long time ago. The computer is an IBM XT 286; I think it executes at 8 MHz (not GHz). The Unix is IBM's Xenix (licensed from SCO). It fit on a 20 MB (not GB) hard drive, including the compiler. Xenix is was capable of executing in 640 MB (not GB) but I have extended memory. So I am not surprised if I am out of touch with current requirements.

Quote:
Originally Posted by onebuck View Post
I like 'VirtualBox' and you could use it with the 'DSL' iso stored and launch from the vm manager. Or just do a normal install to virtualbox, lot of help within the application. You could look at the 'User Manual(pdf)' or 'VirtualBox User HOWTOs'.

These links and others can be found at 'Slackware-Links'. More than just SlackwareŽ links!
Thank you, I will look at all those. Note that I intend to not use DSL in the hard drive installation. I intend to use Debian from the hard drive but I will consider Slackware too. Do you have an explanation why Slackware is preferable? I realize that sometimes the only difference is personal preference and familiarity. I think the best way for me to be able to evaluate the various distributions is for me to be familair with one of them first.
 
Old 12-30-2008, 02:39 PM   #7
Junior Hacker
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Quote:
I probably misunderstood what you meant when you said "wipe off my Windows XP partition". You probably did not mean that; I am taking that out of context.
Yes, I took the long way around to say that I regularly import virtual machines into Vmware. Not sure how other virtual software go about doing this, but normally if they compete, they usually offer all the same features.
I was not suggesting you wipe out Windows, rather that is something I do on a regular basis. And instead of going through the pain of reinstalling vm's from scratch, I import the ones I was using in the old Windows installation beit from a backup copy or from a separate partition where I normally configure Vmware to store them so they are not lost when I rebuild the OS host.

I may not have understood the question quoted below properly, which to me suggested you want to reuse DSL as a VM in Debian but not have it on the flash drive, put it on a hard drive within the box.
Quote:
Can I install into the hard drive using the existing DSL executing in a VM (in other words, without booting from a CD)?
 
Old 12-30-2008, 02:57 PM   #8
Sam Hobbs
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Yes "install into the hard drive using the existing DSL" is not as clear as it could be. I meant that I only intend to execute DSL so that I can format the partition and begin the installation of Debian or whatever, instead of having to create or obtain a CD. Eventhough I am not installing DSL onto the hard drive I assume I can use DSL to begin the process.
 
Old 12-31-2008, 01:50 AM   #9
Junior Hacker
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That's taking a different way around, but to each his/her own.

You still need the Debian installer to start the installation. And Debian offers many installation methods that don't require creating a CD. Like, "other images (netboot, usb stick, floppy, etc)", all of which will be capable of doing everything on a bare non-partitioned/partitioned brand new/used/partially used disk including creating and formatting partitions.
Installation manual can be found here.

You can do very little of it from a DSL VM installed in Vista (I think this is what you're implying), probably only formatting. At least with Vmware, you can only give access to a volume or partition to the VM that Windows can see, not unpartitioned disk space.
Which means you'll have to create the partition some other way before a VM can have access to it to do the formatting. You can use Vista's disk tools to create the partition, then an icon appears in 'My Computer' in Vista for the partition, now you can share it with the VM.
 
Old 12-31-2008, 07:59 AM   #10
onebuck
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Hi,
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sam Hobbs View Post
I will do that if I need to.

I did use Unix a long time ago. The computer is an IBM XT 286; I think it executes at 8 MHz (not GHz). The Unix is IBM's Xenix (licensed from SCO). It fit on a 20 MB (not GB) hard drive, including the compiler. Xenix is was capable of executing in 640 MB (not GB) but I have extended memory. So I am not surprised if I am out of touch with current requirements.


Thank you, I will look at all those. Note that I intend to not use DSL in the hard drive installation. I intend to use Debian from the hard drive but I will consider Slackware too. Do you have an explanation why Slackware is preferable? I realize that sometimes the only difference is personal preference and familiarity. I think the best way for me to be able to evaluate the various distributions is for me to be familair with one of them first.
Xenix? Wow, been years for me. If you've used UNIX then Slackware should be a good fit for you. As for the XT, rather limited hardware for what you are wanting to do with a modern distribution.
 
Old 12-31-2008, 11:51 AM   #11
Sam Hobbs
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Quote:
Originally Posted by onebuck View Post
As for the XT, rather limited hardware for what you are wanting to do with a modern distribution.
Of course. In fact it would be impossible. I did not intend to imply I would use an XT 286 for a modern distribution. Linux has evolved significatly since then and the Xenix and XT 286 examples are just explanations of why I might not realize how significant the requirements are for Linux and other operating systems.
 
Old 12-31-2008, 12:09 PM   #12
Sam Hobbs
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Junior Hacker View Post
Debian offers many installation methods that don't require creating a CD. Like, "other images (netboot, usb stick, floppy, etc)"
The netboot is the option I intend to use. I might change that later but it is my intent at the moment.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Junior Hacker View Post
You can do very little of it from a DSL VM installed in Vista (I think this is what you're implying), probably only formatting.
Yes, formatting mainly. I am hoping that I can do something such as installing a minimum Linux, enough to get a netboot started. Then I would use qemu to start the netboot and continue the install from there.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Junior Hacker View Post
Which means you'll have to create the partition some other way before a VM can have access to it to do the formatting. You can use Vista's disk tools to create the partition, then an icon appears in 'My Computer' in Vista for the partition, now you can share it with the VM.
For me, the partiton does exist as a 1 GB Windows partition.

The "share it with the VM" is a critical step. I think one thing that is difficult and scary for Windows users that want to use an existing Windows partition without damaging the Windows already installed is being able to find the partition using Linux that corresponds to (is) the Windows partition to be used for Linux. Linux has a different mechanism for identify partitions than Windows does and when Linux is not capable of "seeing" NTFS files, it can be confusing and difficult to be sure what is the partition that a Windows user wants to use. If it is possible to designate the partition using Windows such that the partition to be used from Linux is clearly identified, then that could make things easier and safer. If you or anyone has any more comments about that then I think that could be very useful. I have not investigated that yet but until I do I assume it is easy enough to learn to do but any help that anyone can provide will be appreciated.

Last edited by Sam Hobbs; 12-31-2008 at 12:12 PM. Reason: clarification
 
Old 12-31-2008, 12:48 PM   #13
onebuck
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Hi,
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sam Hobbs View Post
Of course. In fact it would be impossible. I did not intend to imply I would use an XT 286 for a modern distribution. Linux has evolved significatly since then and the Xenix and XT 286 examples are just explanations of why I might not realize how significant the requirements are for Linux and other operating systems.
I see!

I would suggest that you look at the hardware requirements for some of the modern GNU/Linux Distributions.
 
Old 12-31-2008, 01:53 PM   #14
Sam Hobbs
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Quote:
Originally Posted by onebuck View Post
Hi,
I would suggest that you look at the hardware requirements for some of the modern GNU/Linux Distributions.
There is nothing in this thread related to hardware requirements. There was the comment that 1 GB might not be enough, but that is the closest thing to hardware requirements anywhere in this thread. You are taking the comment about storage requirements way too seriously. Perhaps it will help me to research how much space will be required but that is all that needs to be looked at based on anything said in this forum.

Are you saying that it is a mistake for me to use the 1 GB? That is quite different from "hardware requirements". If the 1 GB partition becomes insufficient, I then can find or create a larger partition then reload or whatever. I would not have damaged anything and I would have learned from the experience. What have I said to indicate that hardware requirements are a potential problem?

Last edited by Sam Hobbs; 12-31-2008 at 02:46 PM.
 
Old 12-31-2008, 02:19 PM   #15
onebuck
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Hi,
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sam Hobbs View Post
There is nothing in this thread related to hardware requirements. There was the comment that 1 GB might not be enough, but that is the closest thing to hardware requirements anywhere in this thread. You are taking the comment about storage requirements way too seriously. Perhaps it will help me to research how much space will be required but that is all that needs to be looked at based on anything said in this forum.

Are you saying that it is a mistake for me to use the 1 GB? That is quite different from "hardware requirements". If the 1 GB partition is insufficient then I find or create a larger partition then reload or whatever. I would not have damaged anything and I would have learned from the experience. What have I said to indicate that hardware requirements are a potential problem?
Yes, there are hardware requirements being discussed, it's just that you don't understand it fully. I'm sorry if you don't understand what I'm saying. But you are looking at hardware requirements when even speaking of space requirements on a hdd. Mix in the statements with the 'XT'. You tend to come across as not knowing the necessary requirements for a install. Be it for a 'VM' or standard install method. If you plan on using a 'VM' then indeed there are hardware requirements for even that platform. Sure semantics can present issues between individual information exchange therefore causing mis-information exchange or the lack of proper exchanges.

No serious attitude here, just trying to assist with the information provided. No I'm not saying it's a mistake but you are going to be limited in the user space for the 'VM'. Check out some of the howto docs for VirtualBox.

'User Manual(pdf)' + 'VirtualBox Downloads Page' + 'VirtualBox User HOWTOs'

You seem to be the one with a problem from a serious stand point, so 'chill out'. You will get more assistance that way.
You have mis-stated and that has presented problems for you not me.

These links and others can be found at 'Slackware-Links'. More than just SlackwareŽ links!
 
  


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