Ubuntu Edgy under Parallels Desktop for mac

As Ubuntu Edgy has not long been released I thought I would see how it runs on parallels desktop for mac. I downloaded the standard .iso and followed pretty much the same instructions as when I installed Ubuntu Dapper.

The install go stuck at the end and I couldn't seem to click anything with the mouse and the install window could not be focused. I ended up just stopping the VM and when I loaded it up fortunately everything was fine, well when I say fine that lasted for about 2 minutes before the problem with the mouse occurred again. I had to manually close the VM again and when it was shutdown I decided to up the memory allocation to 512mb. As a result of this I would suggest starting off with an allocation of at least 512mb of memory before installing edgy.

Another issue I noticed both before and after installation, was that the progress bars were screwed, just like this screenshot. In researching this problem it would appear that it doesn't seem to be something that is exclusive to running Edgy on parallels desktop for mac See this bug for more info..

The temporary answer for this was to change the theme to use the Human legacy controls so that you do then at least have visible progress bars.

To be able to use higher resolutions you do still need to run sudo dpkg-reconfigure -phigh xserver-xorg and select all of the resolutions you wish to choose from. Once you have done this you can then choose different resolutions from the screen resolution applet. This works on the fly which is a distinct improvement compared to Dapper.

One thing I don't like is the lack of output at boot and at shutdown. This means on shutdown you have look at the Parallels hard disk indicator to know that Ubuntu has halted and that it's safe to switch the VM off.

To turn the boot messages back on you need to edit /boot/grub/menu.lst and remove the kernel parameters "quiet" and "splash". By the looks of this there should be a graphical splash but for me this never appears so showing the full start-up messages is the best bet for now. If you have any pointers how to enable the splash screen so it's not just a black screen at boot, impart your wisdom in the comments.

Thanks to the link supplied by Adam in the comments below here's the answer to turning the splash screen on:

The splash screen problem can be solved by editing /boot/grub/menu.lst

Where you need to change:
kernel /boot/vmlinuz-2.6.17-10-generic root=/dev/hda1 ro quiet splash
kernel /boot/vmlinuz-2.6.17-10-generic root=/dev/hda1 ro quiet splash vga=792

Aside from a few glitches Edgy seems faster and more solid in comparison to dapper. Something that's still missing though, is for the parallels team to get a chance to come up with some tools and better drivers for Linux so that there's faster GFX acceleration, mouse support and clipboard support. Once these are near to being released I'd love to be first in the queue to beta test them.

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