VirtualPC 2007 is a free program from Microsoft. You can use VirtualPC to run other operating system in your Windows machine. See How to Install and User VirtualPC 2007 for more details. Ubuntu is a version of Linux. It prides itself of a complete package and regular update every six months. See for details. I wanted to test Ubuntu 9.10, but I did not want to dedicate a new server on it. VirtualPC was very handy on this – I could play with Ubuntu 9.10 to see if I like it or not before I put it on my computer. However, I ran into more problems with Ubuntu 9.10 than any earlier versions. So I decided to write this post so other people can have few problems than me.

Installation Steps

  1. Download Ubuntu 9.10 ISO image from and save the image on the hard drive for later use.
  2. Follow standard steps to add a new VirtualPC as shown in pictures below.Add a New VirtualPC
  3. Create a New Virtual Machine

    Name Virtual Machine

    Select Other Operating System

    Set RAM size

    Select New Hard Drive Disk

    Complete the New VirtualPC

    Name the Hard Drive
  4. Start the New Virtual Machine by double click on it
  5. Start the New Virtual Machine

  6. Select Network Adapter the Virtual Machine uses. Ubuntu checks the network connection at the beginning of installation. If your network is not DHCP and ready, Ubuntu takes a long time to go to next step.
  7. Select the Network Adapeter

  8. Use saved ISO CD image to install Ubuntu operating system on the virtual machine
  9. Use saved ISO image to install Ubuntu on the Virtual Machine

  10. Select Language, Time Zone and other options following the screen prompts
  11. Select Language

    Select Operating System Language

    Pick a Host Name

    Select Time Zone

  12. Select Use Entire Disk but do NOT set up LVM. GRUB does not load correctly with LVM option. Ubuntu writes the information into the Virtual Disk on your hard drive. This does not affect area outside of the virtual disk.
  13. Select Use Entire Disk but do NOT set up LVM. GRUB does not load correctly with LVM.

    Write to Virtual Disk

  14. Setup User Name and Password for the new system. By default, this user has root (administrator) power for the whole Ubuntu system.
  15. Set up User Name

    Set up User Password

  16. Do not need Proxy if you can get to Internet directly.
  17. Do not need Proxy if you can get to Internet directly

    Write to Virtual Disk

  18. Setup User Name and Password for the new system. By default, this user has root (administrator) power for the whole Ubuntu system.
  19. Set up User Name

    Set up User Password

  20. Setup the Update Option. I selected No Automatic Update. It is fine with Automatic Update as well. I haven’t had any problems caused by Ubuntu update for more than 4 years.
  21. Select No Automatic Update

  22. Select Installation Package and its Options
  23. Select Software Package

    Select MySQL Password

Fix Screen Display Error
Ubuntu 9.10 did not display correctly on my VirtualPC.
Ubuntu 9.10 Display Error

There were not many entries on the Internet to deal with this problem. I spent some time on it. The display problem was caused by framegraber. Finally, I figured out a work around.

  1. Access the GRUB menu by hitting the down arrow key when the GRUB screen shows up as shown.
  2. Access GRUB menu

  3. Select the Ubuntu Kernal line “Ubuntu, 2.6.31” and hit “e” to modify it.
  4. Select Ubuntu, 2.6.31 line and hit e to edit it.

  5. Use arrow key to move to end of linux /boot/vmlinuz-2.6.31… line.
  6. Move to the end of linux /boot/vmlinuz-2.6.31... line with arrow key
  7. Delete “quiet splash” and add “vga=771” at the end
  8. Delete "No Splash" and add "vga=771" at the end

  9. Hit “CTRL-X” to boot Ubuntu. The display should be fine now.
  10. Successful Boot

  11. To disable framegraber at the grub level, you need to edit the grub file in /etc/default/. First make a backup copy of the file with:cp /etc/default/grub /etc/default/grub_backup.It was very strange if you do not copy the file, next time when you get to the grub file, the content was blank.
  12. Open /etc/default/grub file and move the curse to GRUB_CMDLINE_LINUX_DEFAULT=”quiet splash”
  13. Find line "GRUB_CMDLINE_LINUX_DEFAULT='quiet splash'"

  14. Add “vga=791″ to the end of GRUB_CMDLINE_LINUX_DEFAULT=”quiet splash” so it becomes GRUB_CMDLINE_LINUX_DEFAULT=”quiet splash vga=791″
  15. Add "vga=791" at the end of the line

  16. Update GRUB configuration file with “update-grub”
  17. Update GRUB with "update-grub"

Now you are done. You can test your Ubuntu 9.10 in VirtualPC2007 with various options. Good luck.

VGA resolution table

Color depth 640×480 800×600 1024×768 1280×1024 1400×1050 1600×1200
8 (256) 769 771 773 775
15 (32K) 784 787 790 793
16 (65K) 785 788 791 794 834 884
24 (16M) 786 789 792 795

2 thoughts on “How to Install Ubuntu 9.10 on VirtualPC 2007”
  1. Thanks, saved me from banging my head against a wall trying to get ubuntu 10 working. 🙂

  2. Hi,

    I am going to try Ubuntu on my computer. I am downloading the cd image right now. While downloading i was googling for some info on Ubuntu linux. That is how i came acros your blog. Thanks for the information you posted, i will certanly need it when i am going to use Ubuntu.


Comments are closed.