Saturday, May 5, 2007

Running OLPC on VirtualBox

I have this project that I have been meaning to port to the OLPC but had been postponing to wait for a more mature development environment.
Well, with the release date set for october, I decided that waiting is no longer an option. On my main machine I have the sugar-jhbuild environment, which is OLPC's gui built from scratch within a Linux environment and the Qemu image which boots normally, but that is a bit too slow for my taste.

So decide to try and run OLPC from VirtualBox, a GPL'd new virtualization tool that I have been quite happilly using lately (much better than VmWare).

So this post is intended as a "how to run OLPC from VirtualBox", type of article. So let's get started:

  1. My start point is an Ubuntu Feisty, with VirtualBox already installed. Installing VirtualBox on an Ubuntu box is a matter of pointing and clicking if you have Automatix installed.
  2. First you need to obtain the latest development image from here.
  3. Start VirtualBox by clicking its icon in the menu.
  4. Click on the new button to create a new virtual machine. A wizard dialog will come up. click next, pick a name, "OLPC" for example. In the combo box below pick "Linux 2.6" as OS type. Click next.
  5. Pick the recommended memory size (128MB). Click next.
  6. Since the image you downloaded is a livecd image you don't have to create an HD, so just click next.
  7. Click finish. you are almost done. You are taken back to the main window, and the panel on the left shows the VM you just created.
  8. Click on the icon corresponding to the VM you created. O the right-side panel a descritpion of it will show up.
  9. Click on "CD/DVD-ROM". Check the box that says "mount CD/DVD drive"
  10. Select the "ISO Image File" radio button.
  11. Select the ISO image file you have downloaded previously.
  12. Click ok and you're done! Just go ahead and star your virtual machine!
Now Virtual box will show a console where the typical Linux boot up messages scroll by. After the boot is complete you will be presented with the XO's login screen. Type your name click on the ">" icon and you will be taken to the sugar desktop.Hint: once you click on the desktop mouse and keyboard are captured by the VM. To release them, press the right CTRL key.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

wow too cool , now i dont have to steal my daugter's box