How to set up Linux in a VM (virtual machine)

Setting up Ubuntu Linux with VMWare Player


There are many reasons why you might need to use Linux in the course of your Engineering Studies. It's a great environment for programming because the tools are readily available. And, there some utilities you can only access using Linux.

You have a few options for running Linux on a Windows PC:

    1. Use Putty (or other terminal emulation software) to log into a remote Linux server via SSH.

    2. Run Linux on your local Windows PC

    • Using:

      • Dual boot computer

        • This can be time consuming to setup

        • This is good if you are doing lots of computational work or graphics

      • Use cygwin

        • People rarely do this anymore.

      1. Use a Linux from a bootup disk.

        • This is great for certain uses

      • You can set up Linux to run in virtually using VMware player - So EASY!

          • There are other utilities you can use such as VirtualBox.

          • The tutorial we created uses VMWare Player

Please don't be afraid to try it out. Seriously! You should have it up and running in a few minutes. The tutorial uses Ubuntu Linux.

The cool thing about using VMWare Player is that you can have different flavors of Linux running (at the same time) in different players.. This gives you a chance to evaluate which one you like best.

What is VMWare Player

VMware Player is software that enables users to easily create and run virtual machines on a Windows or Linux PC. For additional information you can refer to the vmware website here.

What is Ubuntu

Ubuntu is a complete desktop Linux operating system, freely available with both community and professional support. Ubuntu is suitable for both desktop and server use. Additional information about Ubuntu can be found here.

Setting up Ubuntu using VMWare Player

1) Download & Install VMWare Player.

2) Download Ubuntu by choosing the option of downloading it onto a CD or USB stick. Remember to choose either 32-bit or 64-bit.

3) Open the VMWare player application. MAKE SURE TO RUN THE PROGRAM AS AN ADMINISTRATOR. Click on Create a New Virtual Machine.

4) Choose install from Installer disc image file (iso) and browse for the Ubuntu .iso you just downloaded. Click Next.

5) Enter the required information then click Next.

6) Enter a name you wish to use for the virtual machine, or you may leave it as is. Click Next.

7) Leave the next box as is and click Next.

8) Click Finish to finalize your virtual machine.

9) If you are prompted to install VMWare tools, then go ahead and do so.

  • Installing VMWare tools will support faster graphics performance along with additional benefits.

  • More information located here

10) You should see this:

11) Once fully installed install the VMWare Client Tools driver.

12) After successfully installing the driver, your new virtual machine should be fully set up!

  • We will test our virtual machine by using Ubuntu to communicate with the ‘maegrad’ server.

Testing our VM with SSH

1) Open the Terminal in Ubuntu.

2) Open the Terminal in Ubuntu.

3) Now we can remotely connect to a linux server using SSH

  • Type:

ssh username@servername


Press Enter.

  • Enter your password when prompted to do so.

Note: You may be prompted to verify the authenticity of the server you want to connect to.

  • Do so by typing ‘yes’ when prompted.

4) If you want X11 forwarding to run for a specific host during your current ssh session do this:

  • Type:

ssh -X username@servername

ssh -X

Press Enter.

  • Enter your password when prompted to do so.

  • Note: This command will only enable X11 forwarding for your current session that you are connected to the maegrad server.

5) Congratulations - you have a Linux VM running!

You Tube - How to Install Ubuntu 12.10 in VMWare