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Thread: UML file system with a Ubuntu Desktop system?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2006

    UML file system with a Ubuntu Desktop system?

    I have a vps account at, which uses user-mode linux. I'd like to run an ubuntu desktop system as my vps and control it via FreeNX.

    Linode lets you pick your distro, and they have an ubuntu server option, but I've had trouble getting an actual desktop running with it. I think there's something a little off about linode's ubuntu server base I was starting with.

    Does anyone have a UML file system for an Ubuntu desktop system pre-rolled? I've never built my own UML file system from scratch, so it would be easier to use someone else's.


  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2007

    Re: UML file system with a Ubuntu Desktop system?

    I don't have a UML dist of Ubuntu, but I have current packages of FreeNX 0.7.1.

    If you are interested, I have Ubuntu packages for a working version of FreeNX 0.7.1. Everything is quite good with only a config file change you can have unlimited sessions on your machine and RDP proxy using rdesktop. The free version of !M server only allows 2 sessions max. I have found this to be limiting at times. Especially if you are trying to setup a server. Plus it runs with the latest NX 3.0 backend and client. I have working versions compiled for gutsy on x86_64 and i386. If you need other dist packages, please let me know and I'll start a VM to build one.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Washington State
    Ubuntu 10.04 Lucid Lynx

    Re: UML file system with a Ubuntu Desktop system?

    Creating an Ubuntu file system for UML is simple. Just use debootstrap.

    First, build a disk image. The commands below creates a 1GB sparse disk image with an ext3 file system
    dd if=/dev/zero of=ubuntu-fs bs=1024 seek=1M count=1
    mkfs.ext3 ubuntu-fs
    Next, install debootstrap, mount your disk image, and install your system. You can replace gutsy with your preferred ubuntu release.
    sudo apt-get install debootstrap
    sudo mount -o loop ubuntu-fs /mnt
    sudo debootstrap --arch i386 gutsy /mnt
    Finally, chroot into the filesystem and install ubuntu-desktop and any other packages you require. debootstrap installs a minimal command-line system, so you need to install and configure your new system.
    host$ sudo chroot /mnt /bin/bash --login -i
    uml guest# apt-get install ubuntu-desktop ...
    Once you have your file system configured, you need to unmount it before using it with uml.
    sudo umount /mnt
    ./linux ubda=ubuntu-fs mem=128M
    There are plenty of tutorials out there. Just google for "ubuntu debootstrap" or just "debootstrap". Enjoy.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2007

    Re: UML file system with a Ubuntu Desktop system?

    BTW If you still need packages for Ubuntu of FreeNX 0.7.1 just visit my forum here:

    Oh, here is a UML site I found very interesting:

    Although for Gutsy, packages are in the universe repos for user mode linux. I recommend using them.
    The best option is to start with guml:
    sudo apt-get install guml
    Use your favorite editor and open /usr/share/doc/guml/README
    nano /usr/share/doc/guml/README
    follow the instructions to create UML configuration files. Then run guml.
    Last edited by daflame; November 28th, 2007 at 08:20 AM.


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