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Windows 7: Linux - Install on Windows 7 Virtual Machine using VirtualBox



Linux - Install on Windows 7 Virtual Machine using VirtualBox

How to Install Ubuntu Linux on a Windows 7 Virtual Machine using VirtualBox - a complete walkthrough
Published by Kari
14 Dec 2010
Published by

information   Information
Microsoft Virtual PC is my choice to run Windows virtual machines. However, installing Linux on Virtual PC is not something I would recommend. Main reason is the lack of integration elements; Virtual PC integration components are designed to run well on XP, Vista and 7 virtual machines. For Linux, Virtual PC does not (at least at this moment) offer any integration components.

VirtualBox integration components are called Guest Additions. They install and run well also in any Linux distro. That's why I recommended creating Linux virtual machines in VirtualBox.

I am using Ubuntu 10.10 to make this tutorial. At the moment it is the most Windows like Linux distro available, a safe bet for a beginner to start experimenting Linux.

For more advanced Linux users I recommend using Novell SUSE 11.3 which is a commercial Linux distribution, free to test, or its free counterpart OpenSUSE 11.3. The setup procedure in VirtualBox is exactly the same.

Microsoft Virtual PC, Oracle VirtualBox and VMware Player are at the moment the best free virtualization applications. All have their pros and cons, I'm not going to put them in any order here. Let's just say I'm using Microsoft Virtual PC for all my XP and Vista virtual machines, and VirtualBox for older Windows and Linux machines.

You can download these virtualization applications here:
Microsoft: Virtual PC
Oracle: VirtualBox
VMware: WMware Player

OK, let's start. First, download and install VirtualBox using the link above. Then download latest Ubuntu Linux ISO image here: Download | Ubuntu


Part 1: Create a new virtual machine for Ubuntu
  1. Launch VirtualBox
  2. Click New:
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  3. This opens New Virtual Machine Wizard. Click Next:
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  4. Give your new virtual machine a name, choose the right OS and version. These are automatically selected if VirtualBox can determine it from the name you gave. Click Next:
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  5. Set the amount of RAM you want to assign to Ubuntu. For running a Linux vm (virtual machine), 512 MB is enough. You can assign as much as you want to, maximum being about 512 MB less of your host computer's RAM. Keep in mind though that RAM used by a running vm is away from the RAM Windows can use; assigning more RAM can make your vm run faster and better but at the same time make your Windows crawl so slowly even the vm halts. My recommendation is always leave at least 2 GB for Windows, or if you have under 4 GB of RAM only give maximum of 1 GB to a vm. Click Next:
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  6. VirtualBox asks now if you want to create a new vhd (virtual hard disk), or use existing vhd. Choose Create new and click Next:
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  7. New Virtual Disk Wizard starts. Click Next:
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  8. Click Next to accept Dynamically expanding storage:
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    Dynamically expanding vhd means that although the guest consideres the HD being the size given (max value), host Windows only uses as much space on HD as is actually needed; a 20 GB dynamic vhd where only 4 GB is used is seen by Windows host as a 4 GB vhd file, not as a 20 GB file, but the guest OS sees the same vhd file as a 20 GB hard disk with 16 GB free. I recommend 8 to 12 GB for Ubuntu.
  9. You can now accept the default location where VirtualBox offers to save the vhd, or change the location by clicking the small folder symbol. Default save folders are Your_Username\.VirtualBox (VirtualBox 3.2 and older) or Your_Username\VirtualBox VMs (from version 4 Beta). You can also change the original size of vhd here. Click Next:
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  10. Click Finish to end New Virtual Disk Wizard:
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  11. Click Finish to end New Virtual Machine Wizard:
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  12. Now choose the virtual machine you just created and click Settings:
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  13. Choose Storage from the left pane, CD/DVD from under the title IDE controller, and click the small CD symbol on the right:
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  14. Now you need to tell VirtualBox which install media you want to use. You can assign any of the host system's CD/DVD drives to vm , or an ISO image to act as a CD/DVD drive. For now, you want to use the Ubuntu ISO you downloaded earlier. Browse to its location, choose it and click Open:
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  15. Now choose Display from the left pane, assign the maximum 128 MB video RAM to virtual machine's emulated video card:
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  16. Next you need to setup network controller. Click Network on the left pane, choose Enable Network Adapter, choose Bridged Adapter, and choose your host computer's network adapter from drop down list:
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  17. Click OK to save edited settings:
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Part 2: Install Ubuntu on a virtual machine
  1. Choose Ubuntu vm, click Start:
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  2. When vm starts, it shows you the first screen of Ubuntu setup. Choose the language you want from over 60 languages, or wait 30 seconds for English to be selected:
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  3. Ubuntu starts now in so called Live Mode. Double click Install Ubuntu icon:
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  4. Once again, choose your installation language:
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  5. Choose Download updates while installing. You might also want to install Fluendo MP3 plugin offered for better audio features. Click Forward:
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  6. Choose Erase and use the entire disk. Notice please, we are now talking about the virtual hard disk we created earlier, not the actual hd on your host computer. In other words, this does not mean your HD with Windows on it will be erased Click Forward:
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  7. Click Install Now:
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  8. Choose your time zone:
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  9. Choose your preferred keyboard layout. To avoid confusion, I recommend choosing the same you are using on your host computer's Windows. Click Forward:
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  10. Tell Ubuntu your name, choose the computer name and set up a password. Click Forward:
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  11. Installation starts, you have now some 20+ minutes for a coffee break, or you can watch a presentation about Ubuntu by clicking those arrow symbols on left and right:
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  12. When installation is finished, you have to unmount (deattach) Ubuntu ISO image before reboot. Before clicking Restart Now, Open Devices menu from vm window, click CD/DVD devices, choose Unmount CD/DVD Device:
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  13. Click Restart Now:
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  14. When Ubuntu has booted, click your username to open a password prompt. Type your password, click Log In:
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  15. To fully integrate Ubuntu vm to your Windows 7 desktop, to allow networking and for instance cross platform copy & paste, you need to install VirtualBox Guest Additions. Click Devices menu, choose Install Guest Additions:
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  16. If the CD/DVD icon appears on the desktop, right click it and choose Open With Autorun Prompt:
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  17. If the CD/DVD icon does not appear on desktop (happens sometimes), open Ubuntu's Places menu, and choose VBOXADDITIONS. Choose then Open Autorun Prompt from VBOXADDITIONS window:
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  18. Choose Run to start Guest Additions setup:
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  19. You must now enter the administrative password. It is the same you chose for your account, so enter it now:
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  20. When Guest Additions are set up, you must press Return (Enter) to close the window:
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  21. Restart Ubuntu:
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  22. After reboot, you are ready to go:
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That's it. Made easy by Windows 7 and a virtualizaton application.


Kari
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14 Dec 2010   #1
StalkeR

Windows 7 Ultimate SP1 x64
 
 

Nice job Kari!

My System SpecsSystem Spec
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14 Dec 2010   #2
CarlTR6

Windows 7 Ultimate 32 bit
 
 

Excellent work. Thank you.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
14 Dec 2010   #3
Dinesh

Windows® 8 Pro (64-bit)
 
 

That is cool.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
14 Dec 2010   #4
WindowsStar

Windows 7 Enterprise (x64); Windows Server 2008 R2 (x64)
 
 

Great work Kari!
My System SpecsSystem Spec
14 Dec 2010   #5
Kari

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Windows 8.1 Pro with Media Center
 
 

Thanks geeks!
My System SpecsSystem Spec
15 Dec 2010   #6
pacinitaly

windows 7 professional & ultimate 64bit laptops
 
 

great job !!!

still to afraid to play around
My System SpecsSystem Spec
15 Dec 2010   #7
Dave76

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Windows 7 Ult x64 - SP1/ Windows 8 Pro x64
 
 

Nice work Kari
My System SpecsSystem Spec
18 Dec 2010   #8
cpu11

Windows 7 Ultimate 64 bit
 
 

thanks brother... i hope it wud work.. gonna give this a try soon...
rep added btw...
My System SpecsSystem Spec
18 Dec 2010   #9
Kari

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Windows 8.1 Pro with Media Center
 
 

Thanks, geeks.

Cpu11, about you hoping it would work: the screenshots above are from actual install process, so I would like to say it works As always in computing, I can only say that if you'll do exactly as instructed, it's going to work.

Kari
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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 Linux - Install on Windows 7 Virtual Machine using VirtualBox




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