Saturday, May 23, 2009

How to duplicate / clone virtual machine on VirtualBox

To get around the limitations of VirtualBox's linear snapshots, what I decided to do was just clone the machine itself. Here's how to do it.

VirtualBox doesn't really allow you to clone a machine. However, it does have a feature to clone a disk, which is pretty much the same thing. You can then easily use the disk to build the same machine.

1) You need to merge the snapshots into the parent vdi file. To do this, turn off the machine. Open the Snapshot page of VirtualBox. If you want to include the current state, make a sapshot for it. Then, for each snapshot, select "Discard" snapshot. This will merge the changes into the parent disk.

2) Use VBoxManage.exe's clonevdi feature on the disk you want to duplicate

C:\Program Files\Sun\xVM VirtualBox>VBoxManage.exe clonevdi "C:\Users\Marky\.VirtualBox\HardDisks\XP.vdi" "C:\Users\Marky\.VirtualBox\HardDisks\XPvideo.vdi"
VirtualBox Command Line Management Interface Version 2.2.2
(C) 2005-2009 Sun Microsystems, Inc.
All rights reserved.

Clone hard disk created in format 'VDI'. UUID: 8d143541-123e-4de0-ba2f-8f72b197a8f2

3) In VirtualBox, create a new Virtual machine and point to the cloned hard disk.

3) Start it up.
That's it. You're done!


Thursday, May 21, 2009

Looking for VMware on Vista x64? Use VirtualBox!

Well, I had my mind set on installing VMware and configuring a few virtual machines. So, I went ahead and downloaded the latest version of VMware server. After a long wait, to my disappointment, it wouldn't install! It doesn't look like VMWare supports Vista x64 as the host. Oh well, forget it!

After seeing a demo of VirtualBox during the Java Developer Day conference a few days ago, I decided to try it out. If it's as good as they claim, then maybe this could be my answer? And true enough, it supports Vista x64 as a host and it pretty much supports all operating systems as a guest. (Except OSX, I think. Hmm... we'll see about that. *wink*)

So, I suggest you give it a try as an alternative to VMware. It's working well for me so far. Here is the link.

Update 2009-05-22:
Hmm... after giving it a good test, I don't think I'm very happy with VirtualBox. Switching from gui mode to text mode on a Linux guest seems to mess up the mouse pointer. A Vista x64 guest caused it to crash. I had to restart my pc to kill the Virtualbox process. And snapshots are so limited in functionality compared to VMware. I might actually give VMware another try. Perhaps I was just doing it wrong the first time. Oh well...


Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Ubuntu 9.04 Jaunty Jackalope

Well, Ubuntu 9.04 Jaunty Jacklope was just recently released. And I'm just about to download it and give it a go. Please stay tuned. I will be adding a few more HOWTOs for problems & solutions I encounter.

In the mean time, why don't you try it out for yourself as well? Here's the link.


Learning heli loops on the Blade 400 3D

Blade 400 RC Heli Accident

I was trying to solve a problem with my gyro and tail servo. So, I decided to overhaul the heli. Unfortunately, I may not have secured the feathering shaft tight enough. The head assembly pretty much exploded in front of me and sent the blades flying at me at around 2000 RPM. Luckily, I was just about to land it, so it was very low. This could have been much worse! Phew! =)

heli accident 1

heli accident 2