How to install XenServer Tools - Linux

Within this tutorial we will cover how to install XenServer Tools to your virtual machines. This applies to CentOS, Debian and Red Hat operating systems.

1. Open up XenCenter and establish a connection to your XenServer. Here is an example of a Virtual Machine that is a fresh install but does not have XenServer Tools setup. You will notice that for "Virtualization State:" the software says "Tools not installed".

2. Let's get started by simply right-clicking on the name of our Virtual Machine and clicking "Install XenServer Tools". A warning will come up stating that, "Any CD or DVD currently in the Virtual Machine's CD drive will be ejected when xenServer Tools are installed." Click on "Install ZenServer Tools" to continue unless you are currently using a CD in the VM. If so, continue this tutorial at a time when the virtual disk drive is free for use.

 

3. You should be sent to the console tab of XenCenter for your Virtual Machine. You will notice that at the top of the window, below the tabs that the software is telling you that it has the CD image of "xs-tools.iso" loaded into the DVD Drive. It also provides you with the device name within the system. 

 

4. You can do the following steps via either the console or via an SSH session to the system. I will perform the installation using SSH. Here is the output of my session. Remember that the drive's device name is provided by XenCenter.

$ ssh 10.17.37.243
root@10.17.37.243's password:
Last login: Thu Sep 11 12:57:31 2008 from 10.0.80.84
[root@ns0 ~]# cd /mnt
[root@ns0 mnt]# ls
[root@ns0 mnt]# mkdir xs-tools
[root@ns0 mnt]# mount /dev/xvdd /mnt/xs-tools/
mount: block device /dev/xvdd is write-protected, mounting read-only
[root@ns0 mnt]# cd /mnt/xs-tools/Linux/
[root@ns0 Linux]# bash install.sh
Detected `CentOS release 5.2 (Final)' (centos version 5).
 
The following changes will be made to this Virtual Machine:
* packages to be installed/upgraded:
- kernel-xen-2.6.18-53.1.13.el5.xs4.1.0.24.x86_64.rpm
- xe-guest-utilities-4.1.0-257.x86_64.rpm
 
Continue? [y/n] y
 
Preparing...########################################### [100%]
1:xe-guest-utilities########################################### [100%]
Preparing...########################################### [100%]
package kernel-xen-2.6.18-92.el5 (which is newer than kernel-xen-2.6.18-53.1.13.el5.xs4.1.0.24) is
already installed
 
You should now reboot this Virtual Machine.
[root@ns0 Linux]#

If you would like to simply copy and paste into your shell, the following lines should perform all of the steps provided that you are assigned the same device name of /dev/xvdd

mkdir /mnt/xs-tools
mount /dev/xvdd /mnt/xs-tools
cd /mnt/xs-tools/Linux/
bash install.sh

5. The XenServer Tools installation script does a reasonable job of determining the best way to install what it needs without much intervention. If everything went well you should be able to reboot your system from the command line and when it restarts you can see that XenServer Tools are installed as in the following image.


6. Now XenCenter will be able to have a bit more control of the operating system within the Virtual Machine and you will also be able to view the previously unavailable counters within the "Performance" tab of XenCenter. 

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