Install Ubuntu 9 on Virtual PC 2007


I have been using Virtual PC to test reported problems, as a windows developer we only ever had to use Virtual PC for Windows OS, (Vista, XP and so on), but now I wanted to use it to install Ubuntu. If you don’t know what Ubuntu is, Wikipedia has a nice little article about it, basically it is a Linux operating system that has all the pretty desktop feature that most of us Windows users have grown to love.

This is what I used to install Ubuntu on my virtual server.

  • Virtual PC2007 sp1, (get it here).
  • Ubuntu Alternate CD, (get it here).

Create a virtual machine with enough resource, I chose 1024Mb of memory and 30Gb disk space. I think the minimum requirement is 256Mb of memory or something like that but if you can spare 1Gb of memory, use it .

Start the virtual machine and go to CD->Capture ISO image…, (you might need to reset the virtual machine afterwards if, like me, you are not quick enough).

When Ubuntu start it should pickup your ‘CD/ISO image’, you then choose your language
At this point if you try to do the install it will not work, this is because the install program does not ‘guess’ what your video mode is, (after all it is a virtual machine, so you cannot blame Ubuntu for guessing wrong).
So you need to tell it what to use.

To do that when you see the Install Ubuntu menu, (make sure that it is highlighted) . Press F6 and then press esc again to close the menu, (I know, I know there are other ways of doing it, but this way is good enough).

You will see a new line at the bottom that will say ‘Boot Options‘ at move your cursor, (with the arrows), to the end of the line. It should say something like “… quiet —“, delete that and replace it with “ noreplace-paravirt vga=791” and press enter to start the install.
The rest of the install should be fairly straight forward.

A couple of notes:

Select ‘No’ when asked to setup the keyboad, it will then ask you what country you are in and what country your keyboard comes from, otherwise Ubuntu will ask you to test your keyboad.

Be careful when choosing a username and password, remember that this is all case sensitive and the username must start lower case.

I chose not to encrypt the directory.

That’s it, enjoy Ubuntu 9.0.4.

<edit>Please have a look at the 2nd part, there are still some more tweaks needed to get your Ubuntu to work as expected.

www.microsoft.com/windows/virtualpc/