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The Developer's Guide to Building Virtual PCs : Page 2

Walk through a step-by-step Microsoft Virtual PC 2004 installation of SuSE Linux 9.1 Professional. Once it's built, you can clone your Virtual PC, back it up, perform experiments on it, restore it, and even distribute it to others.


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Walkthrough: Installing SuSE

To give you an idea of what building a Virtual PC involves, this tutorial walks you through a Microsoft Virtual PC 2004 installation of SuSE Linux 9.1 Professional from DVD. It uses Virtual PC 2004 SP1, installed on Windows XP SP2. The host computer has 1 GB of RAM.

Start by creating a VPC:



The New Virtual Machine Wizard will come up:

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You want to create a virtual machine:

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I usually name a virtual machine by the operating system I'm installing (in this case, SuSE 9.1 Professional):

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If you later clone the VPC, use a name that indicates the special purpose of the clone. I briefly experimented with maintaining simple numbered clones, but found that after a week or so I couldn't remember which number had which software version.

The New VM Wizard knows the memory needs of 11 specific Microsoft operating systems, ranging from MS-DOS to Windows Server 2003. As it says on the page, you can choose Other for anything else:

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The Wizard tends to recommend less memory than you'll want for most systems, but you can change it now, and also adjust it later. To install SuSE Linux, allot 256 MB of RAM, at least for now:

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Later, you might decide to run the VM with less RAM to allow more processes to run in the host machine, or you might decide to run the VM with more RAM to accommodate the memory needs of the applications you are running in it.

Since you are installing the system from scratch, create a new virtual hard disk:

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If you were cloning an existing VPC, you'd use a copy of the existing virtual hard disk file.

The default hard disk name is usually fine for a new VPC:

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You now have a VPC that's ready to run, but it has an empty, unformatted hard disk:

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You need to boot it from a physical CD or DVD, or an ISO CD or DVD image file. The CD menu on the Virtual PC shows that you've already captured the physical D: drive. The boot information from the VPC's BIOS shows that it sees 256 MB of RAM, just as you set it:

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With a SuSE installation DVD booted, you get a menu of options. Choose a normal installation:

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From this point on, installing to the Virtual PC is almost exactly like installing to a physical PC. In YaST, SuSE's OS setup and configuration tool, you pick your language:

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And you accept the default installation settings:

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YaST does not automatically detect the emulation sound card. So ask it to detect older sound chips, and it will find the emulation Sound Blaster 16:

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