OPS235 Lab 2 Braille

From CDOT Wiki
Jump to: navigation, search
Stop (medium size).png
Braille Only
If you are not using a braille reader, please use OPS235 Lab 2 instead of this lab.
Wherever this document says "htp", it should be changed to "http". This was done in order to avoid reported problems with some braille readers.

OPS235 Lab 2 - Braille : Fedora 16 Installation on Virtual Machines


A virtual machine is a software simulation of a computer which can be used as though it were actual hardware. It's possible to run multiple virtual machines on one computer, reducing hardware requirements and introducing flexibility. Some common uses of virtualization include:

  • Software testing -- Using multiple operating systems simultaneously on a single computer for testing and experimentation.
  • Network simulation -- Testing network services, protocols, and security scenarios with a small number of computers.
  • Isolation -- Protecting multiple sets of data by storing them on multiple virtual machines. If one of the virtual machines is compromised, the data on other virtual machines is still protected.
  • Server consolidation -- Reducing the number of physical servers in a network by moving physical machines to virtual machines. This saves hardware, administration, cooling, and electricity costs, and it can increase the utilization of hardware (by ensuring that the hardware is not under-loaded).
  • Load-balancing and disaster recovery -- It is possible to migrate virtual machines between different physical machines, to ensure that a workload is balanced across multiple computers, to allow routine hardware maintenance and upgrading, and to compensate for hardware failure or other disasters.


  • Understand Virtualization
  • Use KVM virtualization on Fedora
  • Use Kickstart and Network Installation Methods


  • Completion and Instructor "Sign-off" of Lab 1: OPS235 Lab 1

Linux Command Online Reference

See the manpages for:

  • virsh
  • gzip / gunzip

Resources on the Web

Performing Lab 2


  1. Install the Fedora virtualization software: yum groupinstall "Virtualization" or pkcon install @virtualization The virtualization software installed is in three parts:
    • A system service named libvirtd that manages the VMs.
    • Tools to manage virtualization, including the virt-manager graphical tool and the virsh command-line tool.
    • The actual virtual machines themselves.
  2. Reboot your system.
  3. Start the virtualization service: systemctl start libvirtd

Investigation 1: Network Install with Kickstart

VM Details

  • Name: fedora1
  • Boot Media and Installation source: Network server: belmont.senecac.on.ca/fedora/releases/16/Fedora/x86_64/os/
  • Kickstart file: zenit.senecac.on.ca/~chris.tyler/fedora16-vda-ks-200.cfg
  • Memory: 768MB
  • Disk space: 10GB
  • CPUs: 1

Steps to Perform

  1. Record the current time.
  2. Run this command to start the installation of a virtual machine named fedora1: virt-install --connect qemu:///system --name fedora1 -r 768 --os-variant fedora16 --network network=default --disk /var/lib/libvirt/images/f16-ks-1,size=10 -l htp://belmont.senecac.on.ca/fedora/releases/16/Fedora/x86_64/os/ -x ks=htp://zenit.senecac.on.ca/~chris.tyler/fedora16-vda-ks-200.cfg --noautoconsole
  3. The virtual machine will stop when the installation is complete. You can see if the virtual machine is running with the command: virsh list
  4. Record the approximate time that the installation ends. Subtract the start time to find out how long the installation took.
  5. Once the virtual machine has been installed, start it with this command: virsh start fedora1
  6. In order to connect to the virtual machine, you need to know:
    • The IP address.
    • The account name and password of a regular user.
    • The password for the root (administrator) user.
  7. To gather the information listed above, study the kickstart file. Record your answers.
  8. Using the information you gathered from the kickstart file, connect to the virtual machine: ssh accountname@IPaddress (substitute the correct account name and IP address)
  9. Enter the password when requested.
  10. On the virtual machine, determine:
    • The number of packages installed
    • The amount of free disk space
  11. Stop the virtual machine by typing, as the root user inside that virtual machine, the command: poweroff
  12. Confirm that the virtual machine is off by executing this command on your f16host: virsh list

Investigation 2

  1. Install another virtual machine by modifying the command used in Investigation 1. Incorporate these changes:
    1. Use the name "fedora2" for this virtual machine.
    2. Change the name of the disk file to match the name of the virtual machine.
    3. Use a disk size of 15G
  2. Start fedora2 and confirm that you can connect to it.
  3. The IP address on fedora1 and fedora2 are the same, which would cause a conflict if they were booted at the same time. Change the IP address of fedora2 to by editing the file /etc/sysconfig/network-scripts/ifcfg-eth0
  4. Restart fedora2 and confirm that the IP address has changed to the correct value.
  5. Shut down fedora2.

Investigation 3

  1. Make a copy of the kickstart file. Modify it so that the user account that is created has the same user ID as your matrix account. Change the IP address in the kickstart file to Place the modified kickstart file in a location where it can be accessed via a web browser (for example, in the public_html directory in your Matrix account).
  2. Modify the command used in Investigation 1 to incorporate these changes:
    1. Use the name "fedora3" for this virtual machine.
    2. Change the name of the disk file to match the name of the virtual machine.
    3. Use a disk size of 12G.
    4. Use your kickstart file instead of the original one.
  3. Start fedora3 and confirm that you can connect to it, using your Matrix ID and password.
  4. Shut down fedora3.

Investigation 4: Managing Virtual Machines from the Command Line

Note: The commands used to manage virtual machines must be executed on the host (your disk pack) and not inside virtual machine. Use the host name information in the command prompt to confirm that you are on the correct machine when entering commands.

  1. Start the fedora1 virtual machine.
  2. Enter these commands and note the result:
    • virsh list
    • virsh list --all
    • virsh list --inactive
  3. Start the fedora3 virtual machine from the command line: virsh start fedora3
  4. Repeat the commands from step 2 and notice any changes.
  5. Stop the fedora3 virtual machine: virsh shutdown fedora3 Note: If the Virtual machine fails to shutdown from the virsh shutdown command or from the halt or poweroff or shutdown commands within the VM, you can use dthe virsh destroy name command. You should want to avoid a forced shutdown since that is equivalent to yanking the cord out of the wall on a physical machine!
  6. Confirm that fedora3 has been shut down.
  7. Execute this command: virsh dumpxml fedora3 >fedora3.xml
  8. Examine the file fedora3.xml. What does it contain? What format is it in?
  9. Make a copy of fedora3.xml called fedora3a.xml.
  10. Edit the file fedora3a.xml, making the following changes:
    • Change the name (in the file, not the file name) to fedora3a
    • Change at least one of the hexadecimal characters in the UUID. Do not change the length of the UUID. Valid hexadecimal characters are 0-9 and a-f.
  11. Issue this command: virsh define fedora3a.xml
  12. Issue the command virsh list --all and record any changes.
  13. Issue the command: virsh undefine fedora3a
  14. List all of the virtual machines again, and note any changes.

Investigation 5: How do I backup a virtual machine?

Taking the time to backup the image of the Operating System's file system allows the user to return to a "restoration point" in case something bad occurs to the OS during a lab. Failure to take the time to make and confirm backups can result in loss of lab work!

  1. Shut down all of the virtual machines.
  2. Change to the directory /var/lib/libvirt/images/. Note the size of the files in this directory. What do these files contain?
  3. Make a compressed backup of the fedora3.img file to your home directory with this command: gzip <fedora3.img >~YourUserId/fedora3.img.backup.gz Make sure the backup is successful!|If there are any error messages, DO NOT proceed past this point. You're going to destroy your fedora3 virtual machine and restore it using the backup you have created -- if there are any problems with the backup, you will not have a working virtual machine, and will have to re-install it.}}
  1. Compare the size of the compressed and original files.
  2. Start the fedora3 VM.
  3. Make certain that you are in your fedora VM, and not in your Fedora main system.
  4. Wreck only your fedora 3 system! Try this command inside the fedora3 virtual machine (DO NOT do this on your main Fedora system, or you will have to repeat your lab2 and portions of your lab3!): rm -rf /*
  5. Shut down the VM.
  6. Restore the original image from the backup in your home directory (type this command carefully): gunzip <~YourUserId/fedora3.img.backup.gz >fedora3.img
  7. Restart the VM. Is it working normally?
  8. Create compressed backups of your other virtual machines.
  9. Answer this question in your log book:
  • In order to fully back up a virtual machine, what information should be saved in addition to the virtual machine image?

Note: It is essential to back up your VMs at the end of each lab, so you can easily restore them if something goes wrong in the next lab.

Note: If you shut down your host system while virtual machines are running, they will be suspended, and will resume the next time you boot your host system.

Answer the Investigation 5 observations / questions in your lab log book.

Investigation 6: Kickstart Files

When you perform a non-Kickstart installation, the installation program creates a Kickstart file in the /root directory for reference.

  1. Obtain the kickstart files for all four of your installations (your disk pack f16host, plus the fedora1, fedora2, and fedora3 virtual machines). Copy them all to your f16host system (tip: use scp).
  2. Compare these files. What are the differences? Similarities? (Tip: you may want to use tools such as sdiff to help with the comparison).
  3. How could you use the kickstart file produced by the installation program to perform additional, identical installations?

Answer the Investigation 6 observations / questions in your lab log book.

Completing the Lab

Arrange evidence for each of these items on your screen, then ask your instructor to review them and sign off on the lab's completion:

  1. Three working virtual machines created.
  2. Four kickstart files.
  3. All virtual machines backed up.
  4. Installation comparison table filled in.
  5. Lab Logbook (lab2) notes filled-in.

Preparing for the Quizzes

  1. What is the name of the Fedora installation program?
  2. What factors affect installation time?
  3. What does the file /root/anaconda-ks.cfg contain, and how is it created?
  4. How do you start and stop virtual machines?
  5. How do you SSH into your virtual machines?
  6. What is the purpose of and relationship between these pieces of software?
    • libvirt
    • libvirtd
    • virsh
    • virt-manager
    • virt-install
    • kvm
  7. The installations you performed were network installations. Can a kickstart file be used with a DVD installation?