Virtual Machine on Ubuntu 12.04 and Samba

I wanted to use a Windows XP VM to well, play Age of Empires on Ubuntu. As it turns out, I can’t connect to multiplayer aoe using this method but I did learn a few cool things along the way. In case you know of a method to play aoe 2 on ubuntu, (without using wine ?) please do drop a comment. This is probably one of the easiest methods of creating VMs on Ubuntu.

Even though there are a number of Word Document Processors on Ubuntu, there are some serious compatibility issues between them and MS Office. With the abundance of .doc files it is difficult to survive without MS Word. Also switching to Windows every now and then for petty Photoshop tasks is quite a pain. But now that I have a Windows VM, things are pretty easy.

File Sharing between VM and Ubuntu

This was a tricky part. The VM did not detect USB Drives or any other drive mounted on Ubuntu. Some quick Googling led me to Samba. It’s an awesome cross platform file and printer sharing server and pretty easy to configure.

Hosting Samba Server

  • Install Samba Server
$sudo apt-get install samba samba-common
$sudo apt-get install python-glade2
# The following package provides a GUI to configure sharing options.
$sudo apt-get install system-config-samba
  • Set user password.
$sudo smbpasswd -a username
  • Enable Sharing : The GUI provides some easy to use options or you can always edit /etc/samba/samba.conf to enable sharing. This is how my conf files look like.
[Downloads]
comment = Downloads
path = /home/shivam/Downloads
writeable = yes
; browseable = yes
valid users = shivam
  • Restart Samba server
$sudo service smbd restart

Connecting to Samba Server from Windows

  • Run (Start Button + R)
  • \\IP address of ubuntu machine. Example – \\192.168.1.3
  • Enter Username / Password specified at the beginning.

And there you go! Full access to your Shared Folder. Samba FTW!

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