Ask Your Question

Revision history [back]

click to hide/show revision 1
initial version

I am sorry I can not verify my answer myself at the moment, because I have no virtualbox installed and only a very limited internet connection which doesn't allow me to download it and test the sage ova file.

I think your files are not stored in the ova file, but when you install the ova file, there is a folder created wich contains the virtual machine files in your windows user directory. This could be e.g. C:\Users\Your_name\VirtualBox\VMs\Sage_VM1 (again I have no Windows installed and cannot check this, but I am pretty sure)

You can run different virtual machines, each one will have a seperate directory. Inside this directory there should be 2 files, the first (the small one) contains general control information like amount of ram, processor and network settings, basically everything you can modify in the virtualbox control gui. The other file is a virtual disk image (its usually large). This is basically the image of your virtual hard disk partition, it will contain fedora linux + sage and also your user data.

What is the best method to copy the old files to the new virtual machine? I don't know. Maybe there is an easy one which I am not aware of, but all I can is to point out 2 different procedures which are not difficult but might be a bit overwhelming for somebody new to VM'S and Linux in general.

1. Method: Attach the old disk image to the new virtual machine

Copy the old disk image into the folder of the new virtual machine (drag and drop in windows). In the Virtualbox control Menu you can add a new harddisk or partition to the New virtual machine (select the old file disk image). The sage vm now will have 2 hard disk partitions - the new one, from where you will boot your virtual machine, but also additionally the old image as a second virtual hard disk.

Now you should be able to access the files of the old disk image from inside the new virtual machine. Since I am not familiar enough with the sage VMs and I don't know if there is a possibility to do this from a gui interface I just can give some hints how to achieve this from the command line.

To go to the command line you will have to press Ctrl-F1. Then you probably will have to login as root to mount the old partition. So at login use "root/sage" for username/password (If this is the wrong password please look in the Sage Appliance online documentation.

Create a mountpoint for the old disk image: mkdir /media/old

Mount the old disk: mount /dev/sdb1 /media/old

(some excurs: sd_letter_number, the letter stand for the number of the harddisk and the number stands for the number of the partition, so probably the old disk image will be sdb1. You can list all available harddisk partitions by the command ls /dev/sd*. One of them should be the right one.)

Your old files should be stored in the user directory of the old disk. I heard from another question that this should be the user "gui". So change to that directory

cd /media/old/home/gui

To list the content of that directory type


Now you can copy the old files to your new user directory

cp filename /home/gui

Now you should be able to access the old files from inside the new virtual machine.

2. Method: Use Windows shared folders If you copy over the whole directory of the old VM you should be able to start up the old VM, including all your old files. To migrate your old files to the new machine it should be possible to use a shared folder with windows. How to share folders is described here. Then it should be possible to copy the files from the /home/gui folder to the shared folder, and later import them back into the new VM.

ceterum censeo: I might be ignorant and there is already an easy method available to migrate user files from one VM to another.But if there isn't it would definitely be a huge improvement to create an user friendly import/export feature.

If someone can test this procedures and can come up with corrections to the commands I have given this would be helpfull.

cheers emil