Back to top

Frequently Asked Questions


About ConVirt

Q. What is ConVirt?

A. ConVirt is a tool for provisioning, administering and monitoring virtualized environments. Easy to use yet remarkably deep and sophisticated, ConVirt is a single, complete solution whether you wish to manage a few Virtual Machines (VM's) on a single workstation, or 1000's spread across 100's of servers in a data center.

Q. Who is ConVirt for?

A. Data Center administrators, QA/DevTest lab managers, System administrators, and last but not least, anyone starting out and/or evaluating virtualization. We've specifically designed ConVirt to be accessible to those new to virtualization while, at the same time, be deep, flexible and powerful enough to satisfy data center class requirements.

Q. What are ConVirt's features?

A. Pretty much everything you'll need for soup-to-nuts management of a Virtual Machine's lifecycle --- from its inception as a provisioning template, all the way through to monitoring, migration and policy based administration during its deployment. For a more detailed list, hit the Features page on our main website.

Q. Which virtualization platforms does ConVirt support?

A. Open Source Xen and KVM. More coming soon!

ConVirt has a plugin architecture that allows new platforms to be added easily. We, alongwith the ConVirt Community, will continue to add more supported platforms over the coming months. (the Plug-in Development Guide is available in the Developer Resources section, in case you wish to contribute).

Q. Which Operating Systems is the ConVirt client available for?

A. All flavours of Linux.

Note to Windows users: While a native Windows client isn't available (yet), most ConVirt users on Windows use VNC or Xming and report trouble-free operation.

Q. What does ConVirt cost?

A. Zip! Zero! Nada! ConVirt is completely free and open source software, so you can download, deploy and use it whenever and wherever you like.

Q. Which license is ConVirt distributed under?

A. The GNU General Public License v2.0 (GPLv2).

Using ConVirt

Q. Can I make ConVirt not ask for passwords ?

A. Set up ssh key based trust point between the managed server and the client (machine running ConVirt). Use ssh-agent to load the identity. Start ConVirt, select a server and 'Edit..' and check the 'use key' checkbox.

Q. What is an image store ?

A. An Image store contains a list of provisionable machine images organized in image groups.


Q. On Debian distributions patch_paramiko fails with IOError: [Error 2] No such file or directory... etc

A. The paramiko python libraries are in /usr/share/python-support/python-paramiko/paramiko and not /usr/lib/python2.5/site-packages/paramiko

Luckily, only needs fixing. As root:

 mv /usr/share/python-support/python-paramiko/paramiko/ \ 
 cp install/common/patches/ \

Job done.

Q. While starting ConVirt, I am getting "Unable to open display" error, what does it mean ?

A. do xhost + local: as the user that the desktop was started as.

From the manage node, as root,

1. Open the file sshd_config, usually /etc/ssh/sshd_config.

2. Add X11Forwarding yes.

3. Restart sshd.


Q. I have a question that isn't answered in the FAQ. What should I do?

A. Ask us in our Installation and Configuration Help forum. We monitor the forums closely, so you are likely to get a response very quickly.