Installing Linux with a GUI under MS Virtual PC

Since I haven’t been able to find a version of VMWare Server that works properly under Vista as a host system, I have fallen back to using MS Virtual PC 2007 to run the VMs on my desktop machine. This works well enough for the windows VMs, but installing linux can be frustrating. The X-Windows installer always seems to want to come up in 24 bit colour mode, but Virtual PC thinks it’s 16 bit colour mode. This results in a corrupt display and the failure to continue the installation. To work around this, you need to remember to tell the linux installer to run in either text mode or vesa compatibility mode.

Use text mode if you won’t be installing X-Windows…

boot: linux text

Use vesa compatibility mode if you want the full GUI experience…

boot: linux vesa

I’ve tried this with┬ávarious Fedora/Centos releases, but it should work with whatever your favorite flavour of linux is.

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