In my Running Windows 10 on Linux using KVM with VGA Passthrough VFIO tutorial I introduced different options for using the keyboard and mouse with the Linux host and the Windows VM. Running a virtualized Windows VM means running two separate systems – the Linux host and the Windows VM – both of which require input and output devices.Continue reading “Virtualization Hardware Accessories”
All about virtualization, including Xen and KVM
Why run Windows on Linux?
Last edited: May 31, 2020
I’ve written several tutorials on “how to make dual-boot obsolete using VGA passthrough“, yet one may ask why run Windows on Linux? Most PC or laptop come pre-installed with Windows, in fact its rare to see computers pre-installed with Linux. So why not just leave Windows and install Linux in a virtual machine (VM), for example using Oracle VirtualBox?
Installing Linux in a VirtualBox VM is definitely a lot easier than following my tutorials on VGA passthrough (VFIO). Not only that, most computer users who want or need to use both Windows and Linux will find that this simple solution is all they need.Continue reading “Why run Windows on Linux?”
Microsoft – stop messing with your users!
Microsoft has done it again! During the last Windows 10 upgrade, it has overwritten the user configuration and enabled “Fast Startup”. Why in the world is Microsoft messing around with user preferences?
To be sure, I always turn off Hibernation and Fast Startup, since both interfere with mounting Windows partitions under Linux. But that’s not the only reason I turn off that nuisance.Continue reading “Microsoft – stop messing with your users!”
Virtual Machines on UserBenchmark
For some years I have encouraged benchmarking of Windows virtual machines (VM), to help users fine-tune the configuration and to get a general idea of how efficient virtualization with Xen or KVM actually is. My benchmarks – posted under the username “powerhouse” – and those of other users can be found on the Linux Mint forum under Post your Passmark results of your Windows VM and UserBenchmark – post your results. When reviewing some of my benchmarks on the UserBenchmark website, it occurred to me that the information on that website can be put to practical use.Continue reading “Virtual Machines on UserBenchmark”
Developments in Virtualization
I haven’t had much time in recent months to follow up on what’s happening in the KVM or virtualization world. That much bigger was my surprise to find that things are moving on quickly. When I started out 6 years ago to virtualize Windows and run it on Xen using VGA passthrough, I thought I would be forever marked as a geek.
Today I’m looking at dozens if not hundreds of tutorials and websites dealing with VGA passthrough (VFIO), and an ever increasing number of followers. It seems to me this technology or concept is gaining momentum, at least among Linux users.Continue reading “Developments in Virtualization”
IOMMU Groups – What You Need to Consider
In this post I present some of the challenges you might face with IOMMU and provide tools to identify and perhaps solve the issues. Your best friend is the pciutils package and the lspci command (see here for examples).
What is IOMMU and why do I need it?
In my tutorial on how to run Windows 10 on Linux using KVM with VGA Passthrough the first and most important hardware requirement is the support for IOMMU – VT-d in Intel jargon, AMD-v or SVM in AMD talk. But what does IOMMU support mean? Continue reading “IOMMU Groups – What You Need to Consider”
Running Windows 10 on Linux using KVM with VGA Passthrough
This tutorial explains how to install and run Windows 10 on Linux using GPU passthrough and VFIO drivers to achieve near-native performance – for gaming, photo or video editing, and other graphics and CPU intensive tasks. It also lists the common pitfalls and possible ways to further improve performance. Last not least it offers a comprehensive list of external resources and helpful links.
Latest update: December 7, 2021
You want to use Linux as your main operating system, but still need Windows for certain applications unavailable under Linux. You need top notch (3D) graphics performance under Windows for computer games, photo or video editing, etc. And you do not want to dual-boot into Linux or Windows. In that case read on.
Many modern CPUs have built-in features that improve the performance of virtual machines (VM), up to the point where virtualised systems are indistinguishable from non-virtualised systems. This allows us to create virtual machines on a Linux host platform without compromising performance of the (Windows) guest system.
For some benchmarks of my current system, see Windows 10 Virtual Machine Benchmarks Continue reading “Running Windows 10 on Linux using KVM with VGA Passthrough”
Glossary of Virtualization Terms
For those of you not (yet) familiar with VGA passthrough, here some common terms used in the how-to:Continue reading “Glossary of Virtualization Terms”
qemu-system-x86_64 -drive options
In an attempt to make the qemu -drive command line options more accessible, here is an extract from the qemu-system-x86_64 man page. You can get the complete man page by entering the following in a terminal window:
The options below are valid for qemu-system-x86_64 version 2.5.0. Please refer to the qemu documentation at qemu.weilnetz.de – look for the version you got and select the corresponding sub-folder.Continue reading “qemu-system-x86_64 -drive options”
Define a network bridge using Ubuntu’s / Linux Mint’s Network Manager application
I’m regularly passing large amounts of data between my Windows VM and my Linux host. To avoid bottlenecks, I use a virtual network bridge that creates a 10 GBit link between the guest and the host, enough to challenge the fastest SSD on the market.
When running Ubuntu or Linux Mint, Network Manager offers a convenient way to configure a network bridge.
Here is how you set up a virtual network bridge for connecting a Virtual Machine to the Linux Host. Please note that this will not work with a wireless network connection, at least not without some modifications:Continue reading “Define a network bridge using Ubuntu’s / Linux Mint’s Network Manager application”