In a moment: One of the safest and easiest ways to try Linux Mint is to sit in a virtual machine. Their actual system doesn’t change at all. In this tutorial you will learn how to install Linux Mint in VirtualBox.
Linux Mint is considered one of the best distributions for new Linux users. The flagship product, Cinnamon DE, is one of the most popular desktop environments and gives your system the look and feel of a classic Windows desktop.
If you want to try Linux Mint and see if it suits you, you can try installing it in a virtual machine. This way you can run Linux Mint on your current system without changing the partition or boot order. One of the safest options if you can run Linux as a regular desktop application in your current operating system.
Oracle’s open source virtualization tool VirtualBox is available free of charge on all common desktop operating systems, i.e. Windows, Linux and MacOS.
In this tutorial for beginners I will show you the steps of installing Linux Mint in VirtualBox. I’ve included screenshots for each step, so you can easily follow the instructions.
Installation of Linux Mint in VirtualBox
You can follow the instructions on any operating system, be it Windows, Linux or MacOS. Just install VirtualBox on the operating system and the rest of the steps will remain the same.
Step one: Download VirtualBox from your website and install it by double clicking on the downloaded file.
Then install the latest version of the Linux Mint ISO file on the website.
Step two: As soon as your virtual box is ready to be used, we are ready to get started. Click the Create button and click Next in Virtual Machine Assistant.
Creating a new Virtual Machine
At the beginning you have to specify the following:
- Name: Any desired name for your VM, e.g. Linux Mint
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- The version: Ubuntu (64 bits), because Linux Mint is a distribution based on Ubuntu.
Before configuring a hardware source, you should know the system requirements.
2 GB RAM would be nice, but it wouldn’t be a good experience. 3 GB is a convenient amount if your system has 8 GB of RAM. I decided to install my virtual machine with 4096 MB (4 GB) because my system has a lot of RAM.
The use of RAM is a common misunderstanding. Suppose your Windows system has 8 GB of RAM and you allocate 3 GB of Linux Mint in VirtualBox.
If you use Linux Mint in VirtualBox you have 5 GB of RAM on your real system (the so called host system).
If you are not using Linux Mint in VirtualBox, the host system currently has the full 8 GB.
Step three: Then select the Virtual Hard Drive Now option and click Create.
Select the virtual memory allocation method (dynamic allocation recommended). Specify the space of your virtual hard drive by searching the drive and then specify the size of the virtual hard drive (this can vary from 12 to 20 GB).
Dynamic partitioning saves space when you don’t need the maximum capacity.
Step (4 (Advanced Settings) : After creating the virtual machine, click on the Configuration button in the menu:
Now go to the screen section. Specify the video memory (128 MB) and select the Enable 3D Acceleration check box.
Don’t forget to engage the 3D gear.
Then click on the processor system tab → and select the number of threads you want to mark.
My system is a 4-core/4-wire system, and I prefer half the processing power, so 2 wires.
Select the processor cores according to the distribution requirements
Once you’ve configured everything, click OK.
Step five: In the system settings, go to Memory (in the left side panel). Click the [Optical drive] button as shown in the figure below.
You will be prompted to view the Linux Mint ISO file you previously downloaded.
Once you have selected the ISO, click on the Start button and that’s it! Now the ISO starts to work as if you were booting from an active USB stick.
Then you need to press the Enter key while Linux Mint is active, as shown in the figure below.
Step 6 : Let’s start with the installation procedure.
Select the language you need for your Linux Mint virtual machine.
I live in the UK, so I have a British keyboard. You can select the one you want.
Select the keyboard layout according to the hardware configuration
You can check the box to download and install third-party software during installation.
Multimedia codecs can be installed when installing Linux Mint.
You can start erasing the disk and installing Linux Mint.
This step might seem scary because you think it will hurt your real system.
I assure you this will not damage your hard drive. Remember that in step 3 you created a 10 to 20 GB virtual disk? Now you’re in this drive.
When it prompts you to delete a disk, it deletes the virtual disk created for it. This has no effect on your actual system disk and its data.
The hard disk can only be safely erased on the VM.
Then select your time zone and click Next. The time zone under Linux can be changed later.
You will be prompted to create a user account and host name (computer name) and choose a password. Once the installation is complete, click the Next button to complete the installation.
Wait a minute.
Wait a few minutes to complete the process.
The installation is complete. Click on Restart now.
Congratulations! You have successfully installed Linux Mint
When you have reached this step, Linux Mint is installed and ready to use!
You don’t have the installation media, just turn off the virtual machine.
To use the virtual machine now, click on the Start button.
You can inform yourself about a system that offers all functionalities. At this time, if you shut down Linux Mint as if it were physically installed, the virtual machine will automatically shut down.
Enjoy Linux Mint in VirtualBox. I hope you managed to install Linux Mint in VirtualBox. If you have any problems, let me know in the comments section. I’ll try to help you.
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