VIRT-INSTALL(1) 					   Virtual Machine Install Tools					   VIRT-INSTALL(1)

virt-install - provision new virtual machines SYNOPSIS
virt-install [OPTION]... DESCRIPTION
virt-install is a command line tool for provisioning new virtual machines using the "libvirt" hypervisor management library. The tool supports both text based & graphical installations, using serial console, SDL graphics or a VNC client/server pair. The guest can be configured to use one or more virtual disks, network interfaces, audio devices, and physical host devices (USB, PCI). The installation media can be held locally or remotely on NFS, HTTP, FTP servers. In the latter case "virt-install" will fetch the minimal files necessary to kick off the installation process, allowing the guest to fetch the rest of the OS distribution as needed. PXE booting, and importing an existing disk image (thus skipping the install phase) are also supported. Given suitable command line arguments, "virt-install" is capable of running completely unattended, with the guest 'kickstarting' itself too. This allows for easy automation of guest installs. An interactive mode is also available with the --prompt option, but this will only ask for the minimum required options. OPTIONS
Most options are not required. Minimum requirements are --name, --ram, guest storage (--disk or --nodisks), and an install option. -h, --help Show the help message and exit --connect=CONNECT Connect to a non-default hypervisor. The default connection is chosen based on the following rules: xen If running on a host with the Xen kernel (checks against /proc/xen) qemu:///system If running on a bare metal kernel as root (needed for KVM installs) qemu:///session If running on a bare metal kernel as non-root It is only necessary to provide the "--connect" argument if this default prioritization is incorrect, eg if wanting to use QEMU while on a Xen kernel. General Options General configuration parameters that apply to all types of guest installs. -n NAME, --name=NAME Name of the new guest virtual machine instance. This must be unique amongst all guests known to the hypervisor on the connection, including those not currently active. To re-define an existing guest, use the virsh(1) tool to shut it down ('virsh shutdown') & delete ('virsh undefine') it prior to running "virt-install". -r MEMORY, --ram=MEMORY Memory to allocate for guest instance in megabytes. If the hypervisor does not have enough free memory, it is usual for it to automatically take memory away from the host operating system to satisfy this allocation. --arch=ARCH Request a non-native CPU architecture for the guest virtual machine. If omitted, the host CPU architecture will be used in the guest. -u UUID, --uuid=UUID UUID for the guest; if none is given a random UUID will be generated. If you specify UUID, you should use a 32-digit hexadecimal number. UUID are intended to be unique across the entire data center, and indeed world. Bear this in mind if manually specifying a UUID --vcpus=VCPUS Number of virtual cpus to configure for the guest. Not all hypervisors support SMP guests, in which case this argument will be silently ignored --cpuset=CPUSET Set which physical cpus the guest can use. "CPUSET" is a comma separated list of numbers, which can also be specified in ranges. Example: 0,2,3,5 : Use processors 0,2,3 and 5 1-3,5,6-8 : Use processors 1,2,3,5,6,7 and 8 If the value 'auto' is passed, virt-install attempts to automatically determine an optimal cpu pinning using NUMA data, if available. --description Human readable text description of the virtual machine. This will be stored in the guests XML configuration for access by other applications. --security type=TYPE[,label=LABEL] Configure domain security driver settings. Type can be either 'static' or 'dynamic'. 'static' configuration requires a security LABEL. Specifying LABEL without TYPE implies static configuration. Installation Method options -c CDROM, --cdrom=CDROM File or device use as a virtual CD-ROM device for fully virtualized guests. It can be path to an ISO image, or to a CDROM device. It can also be a URL from which to fetch/access a minimal boot ISO image. The URLs take the same format as described for the "--location" argument. If a cdrom has been specified via the "--disk" option, and neither "--cdrom" nor any other install option is specified, the "--disk" cdrom is used as the install media. -l LOCATION, --location=LOCATION Installation source for guest virtual machine kernel+initrd pair. The "LOCATION" can take one of the following forms: DIRECTORY Path to a local directory containing an installable distribution image nfs:host:/path or nfs://host/path An NFS server location containing an installable distribution image http://host/path An HTTP server location containing an installable distribution image ftp://host/path An FTP server location containing an installable distribution image Some distro specific url samples: Fedora/Red Hat Based Debian/Ubuntu Suse Mandriva --pxe Use the PXE boot protocol to load the initial ramdisk and kernel for starting the guest installation process. --import Skip the OS installation process, and build a guest around an existing disk image. The device used for booting is the first device specified via "--disk" or "--file". --livecd Specify that the installation media is a live CD and thus the guest needs to be configured to boot off the CDROM device permanently. It may be desirable to also use the "--nodisks" flag in combination. -x EXTRA, --extra-args=EXTRA Additional kernel command line arguments to pass to the installer when performing a guest install from "--location". --os-type=OS_TYPE Optimize the guest configuration for a type of operating system (ex. 'linux', 'windows'). This will attempt to pick the most suitable ACPI & APIC settings, optimally supported mouse drivers, virtio, and generally accommodate other operating system quirks. By default, virt-install will attempt to auto detect this value from the install media (currently only supported for URL installs). Autodetection can be disabled with the special value 'none' See "--os-variant" for valid options. --os-variant=OS_VARIANT Further optimize the guest configuration for a specific operating system variant (ex. 'fedora8', 'winxp'). This parameter is optional, and does not require an "--os-type" to be specified. By default, virt-install will attempt to auto detect this value from the install media (currently only supported for URL installs). Autodetection can be disabled with the special value 'none'. Valid values are: linux debianetch Debian Etch debianlenny Debian Lenny debiansqueeze Debian Squeeze fedora5 Fedora Core 5 fedora6 Fedora Core 6 fedora7 Fedora 7 fedora8 Fedora 8 fedora9 Fedora 9 fedora10 Fedora 10 fedora11 Fedora 11 fedora12 Fedora 12 fedora13 Fedora 13 generic24 Generic 2.4.x kernel generic26 Generic 2.6.x kernel virtio26 Generic 2.6.25 or later kernel with virtio mandriva2009 Mandriva Linux 2009 and earlier mandriva2010 Mandriva Linux 2010 and later mes5 Mandriva Enterprise Server 5.0 mes5.1 Mandriva Enterprise Server 5.1 and later rhel2.1 Red Hat Enterprise Linux 2.1 rhel3 Red Hat Enterprise Linux 3 rhel4 Red Hat Enterprise Linux 4 rhel5 Red Hat Enterprise Linux 5 rhel5.4 Red Hat Enterprise Linux 5.4 or later rhel6 Red Hat Enterprise Linux 6 sles10 Suse Linux Enterprise Server sles11 Suse Linux Enterprise Server 11 ubuntuhardy Ubuntu 8.04 LTS (Hardy Heron) ubuntuintrepid Ubuntu 8.10 (Intrepid Ibex) ubuntujaunty Ubuntu 9.04 (Jaunty Jackalope) ubuntukarmic Ubuntu 9.10 (Karmic Koala) other generic Generic msdos MS-DOS netware4 Novell Netware 4 netware5 Novell Netware 5 netware6 Novell Netware 6 solaris opensolaris Sun OpenSolaris solaris10 Sun Solaris 10 solaris9 Sun Solaris 9 unix freebsd6 Free BSD 6.x freebsd7 Free BSD 7.x openbsd4 Open BSD 4.x windows vista Microsoft Windows Vista win2k Microsoft Windows 2000 win2k3 Microsoft Windows 2003 win2k8 Microsoft Windows 2008 win7 Microsoft Windows 7 winxp Microsoft Windows XP (x86) winxp64 Microsoft Windows XP (x86_64) none No OS version specified (disables autodetect) Storage Configuration --disk=DISKOPTS Specifies media to use as storage for the guest, with various options. The general format of a disk string is --disk opt1=val1,opt2=val2,... To specify media, the command can either be: --disk /some/storage/path,opt1=val1 or explicitly specify one of the following arguments: path A path to some storage media to use, existing or not. Existing media can be a file or block device. If installing on a remote host, the existing media must be shared as a libvirt storage volume. Specifying a non-existent path implies attempting to create the new storage, and will require specifyng a 'size' value. If the base directory of the path is a libvirt storage pool on the host, the new storage will be created as a libvirt storage volume. For remote hosts, the base directory is required to be a storage pool if using this method. pool An existing libvirt storage pool name to create new storage on. Requires specifying a 'size' value. vol An existing libvirt storage volume to use. This is specified as 'poolname/volname'. Other available options: device Disk device type. Value can be 'cdrom', 'disk', or 'floppy'. Default is 'disk'. If a 'cdrom' is specified, and no install method is chosen, the cdrom is used as the install media. bus Disk bus type. Value can be 'ide', 'scsi', 'usb', 'virtio' or 'xen'. The default is hypervisor dependent since not all hypervisors support all bus types. perms Disk permissions. Value can be 'rw' (Read/Write), 'ro' (Readonly), or 'sh' (Shared Read/Write). Default is 'rw' size size (in GB) to use if creating new storage sparse whether to skip fully allocating newly created storage. Value is 'true' or 'false'. Default is 'true' (do not fully allocate). The initial time taken to fully-allocate the guest virtual disk (spare=false) will be usually by balanced by faster install times inside the guest. Thus use of this option is recommended to ensure consistently high performance and to avoid I/O errors in the guest should the host filesystem fill up. cache The cache mode to be used. The host pagecache provides cache memory. The cache value can be 'none', 'writethrough', or 'writeback'. 'writethrough' provides read caching. 'writeback' provides read and write caching. format Image format to be used if creating managed storage. For file volumes, this can be 'raw', 'qcow2', 'vmdk', etc. See format types in <> for possible values. See the examples section for some uses. This option deprecates "--file", "--file-size", and "--nonsparse". --nodisks Request a virtual machine without any local disk storage, typically used for running 'Live CD' images or installing to network storage (iSCSI or NFS root). -f DISKFILE, --file=DISKFILE This option is deprecated in favor of "--disk path=DISKFILE". -s DISKSIZE, --file-size=DISKSIZE This option is deprecated in favor of "--disk ...,size=DISKSIZE,..." --nonsparse This option is deprecated in favor of "--disk ...,sparse=false,..." Networking Configuration -w NETWORK, --network=NETWORK,opt1=val1,opt2=val2 Connect the guest to the host network. The value for "NETWORK" can take one of 3 formats: bridge=BRIDGE Connect to a bridge device in the host called "BRIDGE". Use this option if the host has static networking config & the guest requires full outbound and inbound connectivity to/from the LAN. Also use this if live migration will be used with this guest. network=NAME Connect to a virtual network in the host called "NAME". Virtual networks can be listed, created, deleted using the "virsh" command line tool. In an unmodified install of "libvirt" there is usually a virtual network with a name of "default". Use a virtual network if the host has dynamic networking (eg NetworkManager), or using wireless. The guest will be NATed to the LAN by whichever connection is active. user Connect to the LAN using SLIRP. Only use this if running a QEMU guest as an unprivileged user. This provides a very limited form of NAT. If this option is omitted a single NIC will be created in the guest. If there is a bridge device in the host with a physical interface enslaved, that will be used for connectivity. Failing that, the virtual network called "default" will be used. This option can be specified multiple times to setup more than one NIC. Other available options are: model Network device model as seen by the guest. Value can be any nic model supported by the hypervisor, e.g.: 'e1000', 'rtl8139', 'virtio', ... mac Fixed MAC address for the guest; If this parameter is omitted, or the value "RANDOM" is specified a suitable address will be randomly generated. For Xen virtual machines it is required that the first 3 pairs in the MAC address be the sequence '00:16:3e', while for QEMU or KVM virtual machines it must be '52:54:00'. --nonetworks Request a virtual machine without any network interfaces. -b BRIDGE, --bridge=BRIDGE This parameter is deprecated in favour of "--network bridge=bridge_name". -m MAC, --mac=MAC This parameter is deprecated in favour of "--network NETWORK,mac=12:34..." Graphics Configuration If no graphics option is specified, "virt-install" will default to --vnc if the DISPLAY environment variable is set, otherwise --nographics is used. --vnc Setup a virtual console in the guest and export it as a VNC server in the host. Unless the "--vncport" parameter is also provided, the VNC server will run on the first free port number at 5900 or above. The actual VNC display allocated can be obtained using the "vncdisplay" command to "virsh" (or virt-viewer(1) can be used which handles this detail for the use). --vncport=VNCPORT Request a permanent, statically assigned port number for the guest VNC console. Use of this option is discouraged as other guests may automatically choose to run on this port causing a clash. --vnclisten=VNCLISTEN Address to listen on for VNC connections. Default is typically (localhost only), but some hypervisors allow changing this globally (for example, the qemu driver default can be changed in /etc/libvirt/qemu.conf). Use to allow access from other machines. -k KEYMAP, --keymap=KEYMAP Request that the virtual VNC console be configured to run with a specific keyboard layout. If the special value 'local' is specified, virt-install will attempt to configure to use the same keymap as the local system. A value of 'none' specifically defers to the hypervisor. Default behavior is hypervisor specific, but typically is the same as 'local'. --sdl Setup a virtual console in the guest and display an SDL window in the host to render the output. If the SDL window is closed the guest may be unconditionally terminated. --nographics No graphical console will be allocated for the guest. Fully virtualized guests (Xen FV or QEmu/KVM) will need to have a text console configured on the first serial port in the guest (this can be done via the --extra-args option). Xen PV will set this up automatically. The command 'virsh console NAME' can be used to connect to the serial device. --noautoconsole Don't automatically try to connect to the guest console. The default behaviour is to launch a VNC client to display the graphical console, or to run the "virsh" "console" command to display the text console. Use of this parameter will disable this behaviour. Virtualization Type options Options to override the default virtualization type choices. -v, --hvm Request the use of full virtualization, if both para & full virtualization are available on the host. This parameter may not be available if connecting to a Xen hypervisor on a machine without hardware virtualization support. This parameter is implied if connecting to a QEMU based hypervisor. -p, --paravirt This guest should be a paravirtualized guest. If the host supports both para & full virtualization, and neither this parameter nor the "--hvm" are specified, this will be assumed. --virt-type The hypervisor to install on. Example choices are kvm, qemu, xen, or kqemu. Availabile options are listed via 'virsh capabilities' in the <domain> tags. --accelerate Prefer KVM or KQEMU (in that order) if installing a QEMU guest. This behavior is now the default, and this option is deprecated. To install a plain QEMU guest, use '--virt-type qemu' --noapic Override the OS type / variant to disables the APIC setting for fully virtualized guest. --noacpi Override the OS type / variant to disables the ACPI setting for fully virtualized guest. Device Options --host-device=HOSTDEV Attach a physical host device to the guest. Some example values for HOSTDEV: --host-device pci_0000_00_1b_0 A node device name via libvirt, as shown by 'virsh nodedev-list' --host-device 001.003 USB by bus, device (via lsusb). --host-device 0x1234:0x5678 USB by vendor, product (via lsusb). --host-device 1f.01.02 PCI device (via lspci). --soundhw MODEL Attach a virtual audio device to the guest. MODEL specifies the emulated sound card model. Possible values are ac97, es1370, sb16, pcspk, or default. 'default' willl be AC97 if the hypervisor supports it, otherwise it will be ES1370. This deprecates the old boolean --sound model (which still works the same as a single '--soundhw default') --watchdog MODEL[,action=ACTION] Attach a virtual hardware watchdog device to the guest. This requires a daemon and device driver in the guest. The watchdog fires a signal when the virtual machine appears to hung. ACTION specifies what libvirt will do when the watchdog fires. Values are reset Forcefully reset the guest (the default) poweroff Forcefully power off the guest pause Pause the guest none Do nothing shutdown Gracefully shutdown the guest (not recommended, since a hung guest probably won't respond to a graceful shutdown) MODEL is the emulated device model: either i6300esb (the default) or ib700. Some examples: Use the recommended settings: --watchdog default Use the i6300esb with the 'poweroff' action --watchdog i6300esb,action=poweroff --parallel=CHAROPTS --serial=CHAROPTS Specifies a serial device to attach to the guest, with various options. The general format of a serial string is --serial type,opt1=val1,opt2=val2,... --serial and --parallel devices share all the same options, unless otherwise noted. Some of the types of character device redirection are: --serial pty Pseudo TTY. The allocated pty will be listed in the running guests XML description. --serial dev,path=HOSTPATH Host device. For serial devices, this could be /dev/ttyS0. For parallel devices, this could be /dev/parport0. --serial file,path=FILENAME Write output to FILENAME. --serial pipe,path=PIPEPATH Named pipe (see pipe(7)) --serial tcp,host=HOST:PORT,mode=MODE,protocol=PROTOCOL TCP net console. MODE is either 'bind' (wait for connections on HOST:PORT) or 'connect' (send output to HOST:PORT), default is 'connect'. HOST defaults to '', but PORT is required. PROTOCOL can be either 'raw' or 'telnet' (default 'raw'). If 'telnet', the port acts like a telnet server or client. Some examples: Connect to localhost, port 1234: --serial tcp,host=:1234 Wait for connections on any address, port 4567: --serial tcp,host=,mode=bind Wait for telnet connection on localhost, port 2222. The user could then connect interactively to this console via 'telnet localhost 2222': --serial tcp,host=:2222,mode=bind,protocol=telnet --serial udp,host=CONNECT_HOST:PORT,bind_port=BIND_HOST:BIND_PORT UDP net console. HOST:PORT is the destination to send output to (default HOST is '', PORT is required. BIND_HOST:PORT is the optional local address to bind to (default BIND_HOST is, but is only set if BIND_PORT is specified.) Some examples: Send output to default syslog port (may need to edit /etc/rsyslog.conf accordingly): --serial udp,host=:514 Send output to remote host, port 4444 (this output can be read on the remote host using 'nc -u -l 4444': --serial udp,host= --serial unix,path=UNIXPATH,mode=MODE Unix socket (see unix(7). MODE has similar behavior and defaults as 'tcp'. --video=VIDEO Specify what video device model will be attached to the guest. Valid values for VIDEO are hypervisor specific, but some options for recent kvm are cirrus, vga, or vmvga (vmware). Miscellaneous Options --autostart Set the autostart flag for a domain. This causes the domain to be started on host boot up. --noreboot Prevent the domain from automatically rebooting after the install has completed. --wait=WAIT Amount of time to wait (in minutes) for a VM to complete its install. Without this option, virt-install will wait for the console to close (not neccessarily indicating the guest has shutdown), or in the case of --noautoconsole, simply kick off the install and exit. Any negative value will make virt-install wait indefinitely, a value of 0 triggers the same results as noautoconsole. If the time limit is exceeded, virt-install simply exits, leaving the virtual machine in its current state. --force Prevent interactive prompts. If the intended prompt was a yes/no prompt, always say yes. For any other prompts, the application will exit. --prompt Specifically enable prompting for required information. Default prompting is off (as of virtinst 0.400.0) --check-cpu Check that the number virtual cpus requested does not exceed physical CPUs and warn if they do. -d, --debug Print debugging information to the terminal when running the install process. The debugging information is also stored in "$HOME/.virtinst/virt-install.log" even if this parameter is omitted. EXAMPLES
Install a KVM guest (assuming proper host support), creating a new storage file, virtual networking, booting from the host CDROM, using VNC server/viewer. # virt-install --connect qemu:///system --name demo --ram 500 --disk path=/var/lib/libvirt/images/demo.img,size=5 --network network=default,model=virtio --vnc --cdrom /dev/cdrom Install a Fedora 9 plain QEMU guest, using LVM partition, virtual networking, booting from PXE, using VNC server/viewer # virt-install --connect qemu:///system --name demo --ram 500 --disk path=/dev/HostVG/DemoVM --network network=default --virt-type qemu --vnc --os-variant fedora9 Install a guest with a real partition, with the default QEMU hypervisor for a different architecture using SDL graphics, using a remote kernel and initrd pair: # virt-install --connect qemu:///system --name demo --ram 500 --disk path=/dev/hdc --network bridge=eth1 --arch ppc64 --sdl --location Run a Live CD image under Xen fullyvirt, in diskless environment # virt-install --hvm --name demo --ram 500 --nodisks --livecd --vnc --cdrom /root/fedora7live.iso Install a paravirtualized Xen guest, 500 MB of RAM, a 5 GB of disk, and Fedora Core 6 from a web server, in text-only mode, with old style --file options: # virt-install --paravirt --name demo --ram 500 --file /var/lib/xen/images/demo.img --file-size 6 --nographics --location Create a guest from an existing disk image 'mydisk.img' using defaults for the rest of the options. # virt-install --name demo --ram 512 --disk /home/user/VMs/mydisk.img --import AUTHORS
Written by Daniel P. Berrange, Hugh Brock, Jeremy Katz, Cole Robinson and a team of many other contributors. See the AUTHORS file in the source distribution for the complete list of credits. BUGS
Please see COPYRIGHT
Copyright (C) 2006-2009 Red Hat, Inc, and various contributors. This is free software. You may redistribute copies of it under the terms of the GNU General Public License "". There is NO WARRANTY, to the extent permitted by law. SEE ALSO
virsh(1), "virt-clone(1)", "virt-manager(1)", the project website "" 2010-03-24 VIRT-INSTALL(1)

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