(Deprecated: First, a custom kernel package is almost always required. We're working on a UW-kernel that has everything that could possibly be needed compiled in. The sources need to be on the system as well.) -> this has been fixed.

VMWare will need to be able to build some modules. When it asks where the kernel header files are, accepting the default is fine - provided one has installed kernel-binary and, perhaps, kernel-source packages.

When actually installing it, use the defaults for everything, except:

  • we do want to be able to use host-only networking
  • we do want to automatically configure the system to allow VMs to access the host's filesystem
  • you can add a user right away (to smb) if you like, but it will tell you how to add one later if you don't want to (ie, if the user isn't right there)

Setting up a VM

  1. Fire up vmware
  2. Click New Virtual Machine
  3. Choose Custom and pick the OS
  4. Give the machine a name and location - defaults are probably fine
  5. Set the amount of RAM. Hint: Windows 2000 is happiest with 128MB+, and XP with 256MB+. If your host machine has less than double whatever amount you set, you will not be pleased because the host will spend more time swapping than running VMWare. If you set the guest too low to compensate for this (ie, try to run XP with 128MB RAM guest and the host has 256) both will spend time swapping. So don't be cheap with RAM.
  6. To use bridged networking, the guest machine must have its own IP allocated. We probably don't want this, so choose host-only. NAT will be an option at some point in the future.
  7. Create a new virtual disk. Like RAM, it doesn't pay to be cheap with disk. To be useful, either Win2k or XP will need at least 5GB. The standard XP install we do requires at least 7GB. Keep in mind that one can share disk space for data between the host and the guest, but it's best to actually install apps and the like on the C drive of the guest. 10GB+ is best, if you can afford the space. If you choose to allocate all the disk space right away (on the next screen) then you won't be disappointed later by running yourself out of disk space. It also takes a very long time to set up. If you're not in a hurry, allocate it all right away.
  8. Click finish. Then it's a regular Windows PC.

At this point, you may wish to remove devices you don't intend to use: sound, USB for instance, are almost never required.

-- MikePatterson - 19 Mar 2005

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Topic revision: r1 - 2005-03-19 - MikePatterson
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