Tag Archives: oz

Debian/Ubuntu package for Oz (an excellent VM builder)

Oz is an excellent virtual machine builder. I reviewed it here.

This is a temporary Debian (and possibly Ubuntu) package for Oz:


I’ll put up a more permanent site for Debian packages later when we’ve decided where to host them.

Note there is no separate source archive of this right now. The source is upstream git + the Debian patch that I posted on the mailing list (but the mailing list archives seem to be broken — fixing it). You can build the exact same package yourself by checking out git, applying the Debian patch, and doing:

debuild -i -uc -us -b


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Playing with oz-install

oz-install (see also: Oz) is a command line program for building operating system instances. It can automatically install a fairly wide variety of OSes, including Windows.

Using it is pretty effortless. You first need to write a small template file, which just describes the name and version of the OS you want to install and where to get the ISO from. Here is one for Fedora 14:

    <install type='iso'>
  <description>Fedora 14 x86_64 template</description>

By default oz-install will write the destination VM to /var/lib/libvirt/images, so you either need to check you’ve got enough free disk space under there, or else change the output path in /etc/oz/oz.cfg.

Using oz-install is simple, just do:

# oz-install fedora.xml
Libvirt XML was written to fedora14_x86_64Aug_30_2011-13:53:07

(oz-install requires root, but there is a feature request to remove this limitation)

oz-install writes a disk image and a libvirt XML file that you can use to immediately boot the guest:

# virsh define fedora14_x86_64Aug_30_2011-13:53:07
Domain fedora14_x86_64 defined from fedora14_x86_64Aug_30_2011-13:53:07

# virsh start fedora14_x86_64
Domain fedora14_x86_64 started

# virt-viewer fedora14_x86_64

I don’t know what root password is given to new Oz guests, but I was easily able to edit it out using guestfish.

Note that serious Oz users will want to further customize the guest using oz-customize, rather than booting it like I did. The workflow is that you use oz-install once to create the operating system template. Then you can duplicate the template, customize it (oz-customize) and deploy it. The copy-and-customize step is much quicker than installing a whole new guest from scratch each time.

Update: Chris tells me that the default root password is ozrootpw. You can also set it in the template description file by adding a <rootpw> element.


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Oz 0.2.0 released

Oz is a program for doing automated installation of guest operating systems with limited input from the user.

It uses libguestfs for some aspects of operation.

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