Installing ReactOS on VirtualBox

Installing ReactOS on VirtualBox couldn’t be easier, and really couldn’t be much faster.

  1. Grab a copy of the ReactOS Install CD ISO. Unzip it to your favorite location.
  2. Launch VirtualBox, and create a new virtual machine. The name of the new vm is up to you. Set the OS Type to Windows XP.
  3. I used 256MB for base memory.
  4. Create a new Boot Hard Disk, dynamically expanding, with as much space as you want. The final install size for ReactOS v 0.3.4 is only 94MB. I chose 2GB.
  5. Add the Install CD ISO to the vm.
  6. Start your new vm and begin the ReactOS install process.
  7. Choose your language.
  8. Choose your hardware settings (PC or multi-processor PC, display, keyboard, keyboard layout).
  9. Partition your disk (or just use the whole disk, since its virtual, after all!)
  10. Choose to format your disk FAT (not quick)
  11. Choose your install directory, or just leave the default \ReactOS.
  12. Since you’re doing a virtual machine, install the bootloader on the hard disk.
  13. Reboot the machine.
  14. When the machine boots, it will automatically run the ReactOS Setup Wizard.
  15. Acknowledge the license and “shoulders”.
  16. Give it your name and organization
  17. Specify the computer name, and administrator password. The password, at this point, is optional.
  18. Change the system locale settings if you want. Change the keyboard layout if you want.
  19. Change the date and time if you need to, as well as the timezone.
  20. One more reboot, and your ReactOS VirtualBox is DONE!
  21. When mine first came up, it wanted to install a driver for “System Device”. When I chose to install it automatically, it failed to find the driver. It didn’t seem to be a big deal.

Clearly, this is still a very early release. It is “still under heavy development”. But I must say that it is promising so far. I could see this going a long way to capture much of the hobbyist and embedded device market.

Stranger Photos

I love this idea: tie a camera to a public bench, with a note instructing people to take pictures. Retrieve the pictures to see what people did.

It would be a fun project at Chautauqua, especially if the sign had a URL where people could go see their and others’ photos. Chautauqua is such a trusting place, I could almost do it with a digital camera.

My first terabyte

Prior to Monday, my total disk space in my house was somewhere less than 500GB, spread across my desktop, Anne’s laptop, the kids’ laptop, and my NSLU2 attached drives. Recently one of the drives on the NSLU2 gave out, so I decided to upgrade. I got a pair of 500GB drives, and installed them today. I remember paying $300 (I think) for an 800MB drive in 1995, which brought my PC to 1.2 GB, which I thought was totally killer. Thirteen years later, that available space has multiplied 1000 fold.

Unlike most idiots who write reviews of external drives on Amazon, I do not trust my data to be on just one drive. My primary NSLU2 drive is backed up to the other every night. So when one failed? No worries, really. My only concern was then to be sure I had another copy of that data somewhere while I waited for my new drives to ship.

How hard was it to migrate from an 80GB drive (since the other had failed) to twin 500GB? Plug a new 500 GB into Disk 2, and format. Wait 10 minutes. Start the backup job. Wait 5 hours. Turn off NSLU2, remove 80GB drive. Plug first 500GB into disk 1 port, plug second 500GB into disk 2 port. Turn on NSLU2, format drive 2. Wait 10 minutes. Backup disk 1 to disk 2. Enable daily backup.

Installing AsteriskNOW

I’ve just installed AsteriskNOW using the default settings on Innotek VirtualBox. Here are some things I’ve had to do to get it running.

  • I had to set the virtualbox to us a new Host Adapter. I don’t know how to get NAT working to allow incoming connections. I then set that Host Adapter (in the Host OS) to fixed IP address, and a class C subnet mask. When I installed AsteriskNOW, I went through the Advanced setup and configured a compatible IP address.
  • When I set my admin password for the first time, I used one of my tried and true passwords. However, I quickly realized that the Web UI doesn’t support semi-colons in the password. No matter how many times I tried, I couldn’t get logged in. Here’s how to change the Web Admin password.
    On the System Console, ALT-F2 to get a login prompt.
    Login as admin, with the password you specified.
    cd /etc/asterisk
    sudo vi manager.conf
    Enter you password again.
    Find your password in the file. It should be on line 59, starting out with “secret”. Change that line, save and exit.
    Now you can log into the web UI.
  • I went through the web UI (http://[ipaddress of your virtual server]) and didn’t have too much trouble with the initial config. Since I don’t have any serial hardware, I couldn’t configure any. And I couldn’t see a way to configure a provider. I didn’t sweat it much and continued on accepting most of the defaults. I then created my first user on the system.
  • I was interested in configuring a provider. I wanted to see what that was like. However, every time I went to the Providers screen in the Web UI, all I got was “Loading Screen…” I fiddled with network settings, figuring that it was a problem with a lack of internet access. I messed with all kinds of stuff. Then I tried to load it using Firefox, and HOLY CRAP! IT WORKED. That’s probably the first time I’ve seen a web page work in Firefox, but not IE. (Yes, I’m sure they exist, but that’s the first I’ve ever seen).

Now I need to setup FWD