more of a good thing (a continued first look at OracleVM)

So it turns out that the error that I got was not a Release 4 Update 4 issue but an issue of stupidity on my part. I did not want to use oracle as my password for all of the features. When it came time to enter the oc4jadmin password I entered the new password which caused the system to fail. I looked at everything again and noticed the statement “The defult password for oc4jadmin is oracle”. Once I entered the right password, everything installed and worked well.

18) At this point I now have a R4U5 installation with the VM Manager running. From this I login to the OVS web page and look at the VM Manager interface. This interface is interesting (once I login – the default password oracle bit me again) and I realize that I now need to read the VM Manager Users Guide to figure out what server pools are, how to assign resources, and how to correlate servers to this management interface.

19) after reading the stinkin manual I decided that I needed to import an iso so that I could create a new image into dom1 and play with two systems running on the same machine. This turned out to be a little more difficult than expected. I put the iso files in the /OVS/iso_pool directory and tried to do an internal import and ….. nothing happened. I did not see any images and could not figure out how to import them. Naturally, I went to google and did a search for “oracle vm import iso”. This lead me to a blog by Freed D’Hooge. He ran into the same problem and found a work around. It seems that you need to put the iso files into a sub-directory and then logout and login from the VM Manager console. This seemed a bit odd but surprisingly it worked. I took the four iso files that I had and created a R4U5 directory. I then put disks1-4 in that directory and magically they appeared in the iso import. Needless to say, I was very excited. I now have a collection of files in /OVS/iso_pool/R4U5 that successfully imported and allowed me to try and create a new virtual image.

20) Feeling confident that I was ready to create my first VM, I went to the create screen and realized that it appeared to be easy but threw an error. I now needed to figure out where the errors were reported. I followed the path of creating a virtual machine from installation media, selected a server pool, selected a fully virtualized, and selected an ISO file. Things looked good. The creation happened and when I refreshed the screen it showed an error but no links to the error. I had to expand the “+” on the left of the screen only to find out that the processor in my Dell D620 does not support virtualization.

21) At this point I realized that I really need to find out what virtualization and paravirtualization is. The concept of paravirtualization scared me. I do not like the idea of having to run an applicaiton on a modified kernel. This brings up support questions and what is really causing the problem doubts that I wanted to avoid. I wanted hardware virtualization so I went to the Intel site on virtualization. It seems that there is a new Intel product line that is recently new that supports virtualization. The technology is a set of chips, bios updates, and software to make it run. The Intel processors that support this technology are the Intel Core 2 Duo, the Xeon 3000, 5000, and 7000, and the Itanium processors. With this information I then found that AMD also has similar technology available in the Opteron processor. Some laptops that support this chip architecture are the MacBook Pro, the Dell D430, D630, and D830 laptops, and the Toshiba Satellite and Tecra models. Basically it looks like any laptop built 2007 or after contains a Core 2 Duo processor that supports virtualization. I just need to figure out a way to upgrade my 18 month old laptop to support this new technology.

22) At this point I realize that I can’t push hardware virtualized machines to the hardware that I have and start reading the VM Server Users Guide to figure out how to create a paravirtualized image. After reading for a while, I realize that the documentation is not the best in the world and I need to start looking for some tutorials and other people who have done this. It seems like I should be able to clone dom0 and make it a new image that I can play with. I should also be able to download an image from someone and run it easily. I guess I will get some real work done today then start looking more. If I were looking at purchasing this technology I would have come to the conclusion that I have spent roughly 20 hours playing with this only to find out that the hardware that I have does not fully support the software. I would give up and put this project on the shelf for a few months. It is a very interesting technology but I personally am not in a position to take advantage of it. Fortunately, I work for a big company and am given the luxury of playing with new technology so I will continue to explore.

next up…. creating a paravirtualized image, looking for other images, trying to run without a VM Master and using the command line only interfaces, and trying to dual boot with Windows on one image and VM Server on another (I hate doing this but I can’t get iTunes to work in Linux and have to download podcasts on a regular basis).

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