Saturday, November 23, 2013

Customizing Xubuntu with Remastersys

As I did with the base Ubuntu 12.04, I wanted to create a customized version of Xubuntu 12.04. The first step was similar to my Ubuntu customization with a removal of unwanted default software and installation of my custom set.

While Xubuntu by default comes with some lighter weight programs such as Abiword and Gnumeric, I am more interested in the more feature rich LibreOffice Suite. Along with Abiword and Gnumeric: Pidgin, Transmission, Xchat, Gmusicbrowser and Parole get the ax for my application set.

The new applications include the aforementioned LibreOffice as well as Quadrapassel,  GIMP 2.8 (From PPA), Hugin, Darktable (From PPA), Openshot Video Editor (From PPA), Banshee, RipperX, DVD Styler, gLabels, Audacity, Lucky Backup, WinFF and Shotwell. This rounds out the same software set installed on the Ubuntu Photo customization.

After customizing the XFCE environment, I had run the Remastersys program (as detailed in previous posts on Customizing Ubuntu) and when I went to test the ISO none of my customizations stuck - the default Xubuntu desktop and panel structure was back. After some research and trial and error I did the following to get my configurations to stick:

I copied my user configuration files located at ~./config/xfce4/ to /etc/xdg/xfce4/ & /etc/xdg/xdg-xubuntu/xfce4.  After a reboot of the VM I created everything, I lost some the color theme and icon set settings. Changed those back and all was good. Next I copied  ~./config/xfce4/xfconf/xfce4-panel.xml to /etc/xdg/xdg-xubuntu/xfce4/panel/default.xml (overwriting the existing default.xml file). Lastly I copied the contents of ~./config/ to /etc/skel and the final ISO tested and booted as expected with all customizations in place. Below is a screen shot of my customized setup.

Customized Xubuntu 12.04
Customized Xubuntu 12.04 LTS
I have uploaded my custom Xubuntu ISO to my Sourceforge project page (link)  to go with my Ubuntu customizations. This version includes all Ubuntu system updates as of 11/22/13 and is 64Bit only.

Next steps for my photography geared Ubuntu/Xubuntu customizations include custom wallpapers, splash screens and maybe even a few icons. Don't know when that will be a reality at this point though, but that is what I would like to do next.



Thursday, November 14, 2013

Transferring a Virtual Machine From Xenserver to Hyper-V

Exporting a Virtual Machine from Xenserver and then importing it into Hyper-V is not officially supported from any documentation I can find on-line. If you have need for this conversion, and your Virtual Disks are in VHD format, this is really quite simple. The below tutorial will walk you through the steps I took to move a VM from Xenserver to Hyper-V. I have not tested this with virtual disk formats other than the VHD format, so other scenarios are untested and unknown to work or not.

First step: In XenCenter, export the target VM (VM must be shutdown to export) with the OVF/OVA option and be sure to not choose the option to create a single OVA file. Importing to Hyper-V will not work with the single OVA file export. All the remaining default options are fine, choose to verify the export if you desire.

Second step: On the Hyper-V host, create a folder on the hard drive where you will want your VM's files to live. Once the folder is created, copy the VHD and OVF file from the first step to this folder (The VHD file will be named with a large string of letters and numbers).

Third step: In your Hyper-V manager, create a new Virtual Machine and name it as desired. For the VM destination, select the folder created in the second step that contains the VHD and OVF files. Assign the memory and network options and for the virtual disk, select the exported VHD from the above step.

Fourth step: Adjust and fine tune the remaining settings (virtual processors etc...) and then power it up, your all done!

I have tested this by exporting VM's from Xenserver 6.0.2 and 6.1 and importing them to Hyper-V 2012 running in full Server 2012 hosts.