[IAEP] [Sugar-devel] A Virtual Box solution that works with Sticks

Gary C Martin gary at garycmartin.com
Wed Sep 23 20:12:22 EDT 2009

Hi Bill,

On 24 Sep 2009, at 00:17, Bill Bogstad wrote:

> On Wed, Sep 23, 2009 at 4:26 PM, Gary C Martin  
> <gary at garycmartin.com> wrote:
>> Sure, you could just link the ~/default/datastore directory on the VM
>> to the matching location on the stick. I'm not sure how the pretty  
>> way
>> to do this would be (likely at this moment in time would be just
>> tweaking the VMs to assume the stick was there). Pop stick in, then
>> run the VM would be the workflow once set-up. From a future stand
>> point, you'd likely want to push upstream for a feature where Sugar
>> checked for valid (and correct version) data-stores on start-up
>> (perhaps with a UI if more than one valid data-store was found), so
>> any external media device, or perhaps even mounted network volume
>> could become the default data-store for that session.
> Could you clarify what you are suggesting?   Most VMs (including
> VirtualBox) typically use large files within the host  environment to
> provide the contents of virtual disks to the OS running under
> virtualization. By default VirtualBox uses a format that dynamically
> allocates in the real filesystem as the guest OS actually writes to
> the virtual disk.   I don't think this file is going to be directly
> compatible with any file (or filesystem image) that SoaS is storing on
> a USB stick.  If you were thinking of something else, please let me
> know.

Yes, I routinely use the "Shared Folders" feature for VirtualBox on  
the Mac :-) Every thing Sugar flavour I work on resides there for easy  
access between different VMs. VirtualBox treats this as a device  
(after installing guest additions) so after a reboot I run:

	sudo mount -o uid=500 -t vboxsf <name_you_give_share>  

...which should should do the trick.

Also be aware that you need to tell VirtualBox it's allowed to use  
USB, I think it defaults to allow, but you can also filter for named  
devices if that makes more sense in a deployment. I would also want to  
sanity check the shut down process to make sure we didn't bork users  
sticks at the end of a session.

Ping if you'd like to work this through, should be easy enough for me  
to set up a test cycle here if you think this is valuable.


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