[CentOS] virtualization on the desktop a myth, or a reality?

Dr. Ed Morbius dredmorbius at gmail.com
Thu Mar 3 18:20:06 UTC 2011

on 11:38 Thu 03 Mar, Always Learning (centos at g7.u22.net) wrote:
> On Wed, 2011-03-02 at 19:18 -0800, Dr. Ed Morbius wrote:
> > It far and away already has.  Dual-booting is a bastard compromise which
> > forces you to select between altnernative OSs, doesn't allow for
> > simultaneous access to features (and storage) of both, and generally
> > necessitates use of some low-standard transfer storage partition (e.g.:
> > vfat).
> My dual-booting, actually tri-booting, with Vista (ugh!), Centos
> (brilliant) and Fedora 14 (not keen and a bit seriously buggy) allows me
> in Linux to access and change the file space content used by the other
> two operating systems.  Surely that constitutes simultaneous access to
> storage? 

I should have hedged:  there are means of accessing NTFS from Linux
(ntfs-ng drivers) and Linux ext2/3 filesystems from Windows (explorE2fs
and some ported drivers, IIRC).  As I recall, writing via ntfs-ng still
triggers a filesystem scan on the next Windows boot.  The ext2/3 access
last I used it (years ago) worked, but wasn't particularly fluid.

Neither gives you proper multi-user semantics (/etc/passwd and wherever
NT stores its user perms/IDs stuff aren't used).

If you've coordinated UIDs, yes, it's very possible to share Linux
partitions between multi-booted systems, though I'd still argue that
this is less than optimal.  A chroot works pretty well (and keeps things
like LD search paths sane).  KVM is /very/ lightweight and allows for
separate process space.

Compare against CIFS/Samba shares or NFS exports bewteen booted
host/guests.  You get native filesystem support (under the host/guest as
relevant), and mappings via CIFS/Samba and/or NFS/NIS+.

The win is still virtualization.

Dr. Ed Morbius, Chief Scientist /            |
  Robot Wrangler / Staff Psychologist        | When you seek unlimited power
Krell Power Systems Unlimited                |                  Go to Krell!

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