Development Virtual Machine (VirtualBox)

I’ve been thinking ahead to a change of job recently. Knowing that I’ll be getting a new Windows based laptop and needing to have development capabilities and having developed a taste for Linux 😉

I’ve used my favourite VM tool VirtualBox (now owned by Sun) to create a sparlkly new OpenSUSE 11.0 virtual machine complete with Apache, MySQL, PHP, etc. as well as office tools such as Open Office, mind/concept-mapping and diagraming applications.

Unlike the Windows XP VM that I use on my Linux desktop to give me access to Windows applications – which needs 2GB of RAM to perform nicely, the SUSE VM only needs 1GB of RAM to feel as fast (even though XP doesn’t have Apache, MySQL, etc. running.

Although I’ve created this on my Linux desktop, it should be easy enough to transfer to my new laptop. To help keep file sizes down, I’ve chosen to use three virtual disks. One for SWAP, one for /home and one for the root. This will make it a bit easier to transfer back and forth if I need to – though I’ll probably end up with two separate and different copies as I’m already finding that doing personal development work is much easier on the VM than it is on the host OS thanks to it being a more focused machine with less rubbish installed.