KVM Virtualization on openSUSE 11.3

It’s looks like that I’m off and hiatus from blog for a while so it’s time to starting a new article and hope it’s not for the last one ­čśÇ .

KVM (Kernel-based Virtual Machine) is currently popular terms among the virtualization technology. What makes it popular and become the strong competitor for Xen Hypervisor are the technology behind KVM and Red Hat decision to move focus on KVM instead of Xen for next release Red Hat Enterprise Linux 6.0. What makes KVM gains an advantage on the technology side are the inclusion KVM module into Linux kernel so we do not need a patch or different kernel as we need for Xen Hypervisor. Beside the two virtualization technology above, those are various virtualization technology running on Linux : VMWare, VirtualBox, OpenVZ etc but Xen and KVM are quite popular among others.

SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 11 was added KVM beside Xen Hypervisor on Service Pack 1 release. openSUSE 11.3 released on July 15, 2010 also append  KVM as Virtualization package beside the default Xen Hypervisor. Following article covers KVM installation on openSUSE 11.3 64 bit (the 32 bit installation should be similar).

  1. Install KVM module by using YAST or├é┬á Zypper.├é┬á Install following package : kvm, libvirt, libvirt-python, virt-utils, yast2-vm, virt-manager, virt-viewer, bridge-utils, vm-install. We may also install virtualization stuff by using YAST | Virtualization | Install Hypervisor and Tools and then adds KVM package within├é┬á YAST | Software | Software Management, but the second tips will also installing├é┬á Xen Hypervisor :-) . SLES 11 SP1 has different way to install KVM by asking which Virtualization technology should be install if we choose second tips. I don’t know why openSUSE take different method to install and not as simple as SLES 11 SP1 has.
  2. Activate Virtual Daemon. Open YAST | System | System Services (runlevel) and mark libvirtd as enable services
  3. Open YAST | Virtualization | Virtual Machine Manager
  4. If Virtual Machine Manager has no├é┬á “localhost (QEMU) option, add the KVM instance by clicking├é┬á menu File | Add Connection and choose KVM/QEMU and then click Connect
  5. After that, we may create a new virtual appliance by click  New and follows the  wizard.

Managing KVM on openSUSE/SLES seems to be similar as managing Xen Hypervisor because both virtualization using same front-end application (libvirt) on openSUSE/SLES YAST. KVM need a motherboard supporting virtualization extensions as it’s feature, e.g : Intel VT (Virtualization technology) or AMD-V. To check whether your motherboard supporting virtualization extension, run the following command on konsole/terminal :

Intel VT :

grep --color vmx /proc/cpuinfo


grep --color svm /proc/cpuinfo

Some motherboard disable virtualization extension by default so you must check BIOS setting to see whether virtualization extension has been activated or not.

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