Virtualization With KVM On A Debian Squeeze Server

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Submitted by falko (Contact Author) (Forums) on Thu, 2011-03-10 18:01. :: Debian | KVM | Virtualization

Virtualization With KVM On A Debian Squeeze Server

Version 1.0
Author: Falko Timme <ft [at] falkotimme [dot] com>
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Last edited 03/10/2011

This guide explains how you can install and use KVM for creating and running virtual machines on a Debian Squeeze server. I will show how to create image-based virtual machines and also virtual machines that use a logical volume (LVM). KVM is short for Kernel-based Virtual Machine and makes use of hardware virtualization, i.e., you need a CPU that supports hardware virtualization, e.g. Intel VT or AMD-V.

I do not issue any guarantee that this will work for you!

 

1 Preliminary Note

I'm using a machine with the hostname server1.example.com and the IP address 192.168.0.100 here as my KVM host.

We also need a desktop system where we install virt-manager so that we can connect to the graphical console of the virtual machines that we install. I'm using an Ubuntu 10.10 desktop here.

 

2 Installing KVM

Debian Squeeze KVM Host:

First check if your CPU supports hardware virtualization - if this is the case, the command

egrep '(vmx|svm)' --color=always /proc/cpuinfo

should display something, e.g. like this:

root@server1:~# egrep '(vmx|svm)' --color=always /proc/cpuinfo
flags           : fpu vme de pse tsc msr pae mce cx8 apic sep mtrr pge mca cmov pat pse36 clflush mmx fxsr sse sse2 ht syscall
 nx mmxext fxsr_opt rdtscp lm 3dnowext 3dnow rep_good pni cx16 lahf_lm cmp_legacy svm extapic cr8_legacy 3dnowprefetch
flags           : fpu vme de pse tsc msr pae mce cx8 apic sep mtrr pge mca cmov pat pse36 clflush mmx fxsr sse sse2 ht syscall
 nx mmxext fxsr_opt rdtscp lm 3dnowext 3dnow rep_good pni cx16 lahf_lm cmp_legacy svm extapic cr8_legacy 3dnowprefetch
root@server1:~#

If nothing is displayed, then your processor doesn't support hardware virtualization, and you must stop here.

To install KVM and virtinst (a tool to create virtual machines), we run

apt-get install kvm qemu-kvm libvirt-bin virtinst

Afterwards we must add the user as which we're currently logged in (root) to the groups libvirt and kvm:

adduser `id -un` libvirt
adduser `id -un` kvm

You need to log out and log back in for the new group membership to take effect.

To check if KVM has successfully been installed, run

virsh -c qemu:///system list

It should display something like this:

root@server1:~# virsh -c qemu:///system list
 Id Name                 State
----------------------------------

root@server1:~#

If it displays an error instead, then something went wrong.

Next we need to set up a network bridge on our server so that our virtual machines can be accessed from other hosts as if they were physical systems in the network.

To do this, we install the package bridge-utils...

apt-get install bridge-utils

... and configure a bridge. Open /etc/network/interfaces:

vi /etc/network/interfaces

Before the modification, my file looks as follows:

# This file describes the network interfaces available on your system
# and how to activate them. For more information, see interfaces(5).

# The loopback network interface
auto lo
iface lo inet loopback

# The primary network interface
#allow-hotplug eth0
#iface eth0 inet dhcp
auto eth0
iface eth0 inet static
        address 192.168.0.100
        netmask 255.255.255.0
        network 192.168.0.0
        broadcast 192.168.0.255
        gateway 192.168.0.1

I change it so that it looks like this:

# This file describes the network interfaces available on your system
# and how to activate them. For more information, see interfaces(5).

# The loopback network interface
auto lo
iface lo inet loopback

# The primary network interface
#allow-hotplug eth0
#iface eth0 inet dhcp
auto eth0
iface eth0 inet manual

auto br0
iface br0 inet static
        address 192.168.0.100
        network 192.168.0.0
        netmask 255.255.255.0
        broadcast 192.168.0.255
        gateway 192.168.0.1
        bridge_ports eth0
        bridge_fd 9
        bridge_hello 2
        bridge_maxage 12
        bridge_stp off

(Make sure you use the correct settings for your network!)

Restart the network...

/etc/init.d/networking restart

... and run

ifconfig

It should now show the network bridge (br0):

root@server1:~# ifconfig
br0       Link encap:Ethernet  HWaddr 00:1e:90:f3:f0:02
          inet addr:192.168.0.100  Bcast:192.168.0.255  Mask:255.255.255.0
          inet6 addr: fe80::21e:90ff:fef3:f002/64 Scope:Link
          UP BROADCAST RUNNING MULTICAST  MTU:1500  Metric:1
          RX packets:5 errors:0 dropped:0 overruns:0 frame:0
          TX packets:9 errors:0 dropped:0 overruns:0 carrier:0
          collisions:0 txqueuelen:0
          RX bytes:310 (310.0 B)  TX bytes:838 (838.0 B)

eth0      Link encap:Ethernet  HWaddr 00:1e:90:f3:f0:02
          inet6 addr: fe80::21e:90ff:fef3:f002/64 Scope:Link
          UP BROADCAST RUNNING MULTICAST  MTU:1500  Metric:1
          RX packets:45364 errors:0 dropped:0 overruns:0 frame:0
          TX packets:24634 errors:0 dropped:0 overruns:0 carrier:0
          collisions:0 txqueuelen:1000
          RX bytes:66909993 (63.8 MiB)  TX bytes:1988727 (1.8 MiB)
          Interrupt:28

lo        Link encap:Local Loopback
          inet addr:127.0.0.1  Mask:255.0.0.0
          inet6 addr: ::1/128 Scope:Host
          UP LOOPBACK RUNNING  MTU:16436  Metric:1
          RX packets:8 errors:0 dropped:0 overruns:0 frame:0
          TX packets:8 errors:0 dropped:0 overruns:0 carrier:0
          collisions:0 txqueuelen:0
          RX bytes:560 (560.0 B)  TX bytes:560 (560.0 B)

root@server1:~#

 

3 Installing virt-viewer Or virt-manager On Your Ubuntu 10.10 Desktop

Ubuntu 10.10 Desktop:

We need a means of connecting to the graphical console of our guests - we can use virt-manager (see KVM Guest Management With Virt-Manager On Ubuntu 8.10) for this. I'm assuming that you're using an Ubuntu 10.10 desktop.

Run

sudo apt-get install virt-manager

to install virt-manager.

 

4 Creating A Debian Squeeze Guest (Image-Based) From The Command Line

Debian Squeeze KVM Host:

Now let's go back to our Debian Squeeze KVM host.

Take a look at

man virt-install

to learn how to use it.

We will create our image-based virtual machines in the directory /var/lib/libvirt/images/ which was created automatically when we installed KVM in chapter two.

To create a Debian Squeeze guest (in bridging mode) with the name vm10, 512MB of RAM, two virtual CPUs, and the disk image /var/lib/libvirt/images/vm10.img (with a size of 12GB), insert the Debian Squeeze Netinstall CD into the CD drive and run

virt-install --connect qemu:///system -n vm10 -r 512 --vcpus=2 --disk path=/var/lib/libvirt/images/vm10.img,size=12 -c /dev/cdrom --vnc --noautoconsole --os-type linux --os-variant debiansqueeze --accelerate --network=bridge:br0 --hvm

Of course, you can also create an ISO image of the Debian Squeeze Netinstall CD (please create it in the /var/lib/libvirt/images/ directory because later on I will show how to create virtual machines through virt-manager from your Ubuntu desktop, and virt-manager will look for ISO images in the /var/lib/libvirt/images/ directory)...

dd if=/dev/cdrom of=/var/lib/libvirt/images/debian-6.0.0-amd64-netinst.iso

... and use the ISO image in the virt-install command:

virt-install --connect qemu:///system -n vm10 -r 512 --vcpus=2 --disk path=/var/lib/libvirt/images/vm10.img,size=12 -c /var/lib/libvirt/images/debian-6.0.0-amd64-netinst.iso --vnc --noautoconsole --os-type linux --os-variant debiansqueeze --accelerate --network=bridge:br0 --hvm

The output is as follows:

root@server1:~# virt-install --connect qemu:///system -n vm10 -r 512 --vcpus=2 --disk path=/var/lib/libvirt/images/vm10.img,size=12 -c /var/lib/libvirt/images/debian-6.0.0-amd64-netinst.iso --vnc --noautoconsole --os-type linux --os-variant debiansqueeze --accelerate --network=bridge:br0 --hvm


Starting install...
Allocating 'vm10.img' |  12 GB     00:00
Creating domain...    |    0 B     00:00
Domain installation still in progress. You can reconnect to
the console to complete the installation process.
root@server1:~#


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Submitted by mverwijs (not registered) on Tue, 2011-04-05 21:45.

I kept on running across this error:

 Error creating cdrom disk: Checking installer location failed: Could not find media '/var/lib/libvirt/images/<something>.iso'

 Eventhough the file was there, with correct permissions.

Restarting libvirtd helped: 

 /etc/init.d/libvirt-bin restart

Submitted by agi (not registered) on Thu, 2011-07-14 10:13.

 Running "virsh pool-refresh POOL_NAME" should save you the service restart :-)

 Where POOL_NAME would probably be: default