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Virtual Box and CentOS

This is should probably be a two part post but seeing as I loaded Virtual Box for Windows 7 specifically so I could run Linux I’ll do it as one.

The problem was that I need to run Node.js locally because I dont always have access to the server that runs it at my office.

Step one was to download the latest VirtualBox installer from: http://www.virtualbox.org/ . This is a very cool piece of software that allows you to run as many virtual machines running just about any OS up to the limits of your host machine. Installation was a snap.

Step two is to download the ISO for CentOS. I installed version 5. Try and find an HTTP mirror on their mirror list that will allow you to download the DVD ISO instead of doing bit torrent.

Step three is start up Virtual Box and create a new virtual machine. There are some caveats when creating a VM for installing CentOS.

  1. In the System options for the VM check “Enable IO APIC” other wise CentOS will not install
  2. When the VM wizard asks you want OS you will be installing select Red Hat (match 32 or 64 bit) because CentOS is Red Hat “like”.
When VirtualBox asks for the install media point it at the ISO. You dont have to burn a DVD if you dont want to because VirtualBox will mount the ISO for you. Once the install process is complete shutdown the VM.
The VM automatically installs a virtual network adapter that use NAT so your VM can access the world outside the host machine. However in order for you to use the VM as a server for your host machine you need to install another virtual network adapter that is of the type “bridged adapter”. You do this under the VM’s settings/network tab.
And that is pretty much it.

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