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Aaron McCollum
Aaron McCollum

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First time with a Virtual Machine

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A few days ago, I started fiddling around on The Odin Project and was like “what the hey, let’s do some stuff here.” One thing I wanted to learn was Git and some commands in the terminal. The Odin Project offers some intro lessons on both, so I decided to start there.

For context, my two computers are 1. a Windows desktop, and 2. a work Macintosh laptop which is locked down pretty tight. For working on the terminal, I didn’t think my Mac would let me have enough access to do the lessons, and I have been told by many people (including The Odin Project) to stay away from the Windows command line. What to do?

The answer was to create a virtual machine on my computer. I didn’t know how, however The Odin Project was pretty helpful with their walkthrough (which you can find here). Because I didn’t know too much about virtual machines, I went with the recommendation to use Xubuntu, a lightweight operating system based off Linux. Here are the steps I took:

  1. Downloaded Oracle’s VirtualBox (which after doing some research was listed as one of the best virtual machine programs out there)

  2. Downloaded Xubuntu from The Odin Project’s site

  3. Added Xubuntu to Virtual box per the directions in the walkthrough

  4. Booted it up for the first time and explored!

This took me probably an hour and a half total to do, since I was also looking up stuff on the side and had to trouble shoot how to allow my computer to add a second CPU (hint: it’s in the BIOS). Once I got that sorted and logged in, I was pretty excited to check it out.

I have never had a Linux computer before, so I’m pretty excited to work with it. After having it for a few days, it works really well. I use the terminal for my Git lessons, and it came preloaded with Firefox, which I use now too. And if I want to switch back to Windows for some gaming or for work, it’s super easy to shut down Linux. As a note, Windows continues to run the whole time I’m in Linux since it’s the host OS, however apparently Xubuntu doesn’t take up a lot of space or resources to run.

If you are looking at doing a virtual machine at some point, let me know! And also, if you have any Linux/Xubuntu tips, also please drop those in the comments.

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