Virtual (what?) when using Sage 4.7 for Windows

Update: It's been a week since I asked how to install the program. What am I supposed to do? I need help or I can't use the program. What is up?

Update 2: I installed Virtual Box and tried installing the file and that didn't work either! I had downloaded the 4.7 Update 1 file. Now, it doesn't exist on the website. Thus, the problem may have been with the "sage-4.7-update1" file. I finally redownloaded the file (and noticed afterward that it was different) and this new file may work just fine now. It works fine now. Thanks.

This question has been changed quite a bit. It's the same question but I have more info now so I say what I'm trying to ask better:

In the past, people had problems installing Sage for Windows using the Virtual Box because the instructions were out of date. In fact, the main instructions told you to use Virtual Box but didn't work. So, this caused many people headaches, more so than if they instructions had just said "Don't use Virtual Box, these instructions are out of date. Instead, use the VMWare instructions." They were out of date for somewhere around a year, or more, based on the comment (below link) from October 2010 suggesting the instructions be updated, and the fact that the instructions were just updated in the last few weeks, for Virtual Box. In fact, another comment on this same question say that there was no support for Virtual Box for quite a while.

Now, the file was changed to an ova and the instructions only mention how to install it for Virtual Box. There is no mention at all about VMWare Player. If you click to download the file, you can get the VMWare Player instructions, but they are out of date, i.e., they are for the previous file type. Since the instructions only mention Virtual Box, are you telling me I now need to install Virtual Box, or are the VMWare Player instructions coming soon? I have tried installing it and I have no idea how to get it to work.

Lastly, is there some sort of general idea for when the native Windows version will be ready?

Thanks for any help

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For the record, the main file server crashed a couple of days ago. That was the issue you encountered in Update 2. I've also improved the VM image, so you are correct in that the latest Sage-4.7.ova is different from previous ones.

( 2011-07-11 03:02:27 -0500 )edit

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I agree that this part was not maintained. Unsurprisingly, nobody wants to manually build a new virtual machine by hand whenever a new Sage version comes out. Just recently I wrote the scripts to automatically generate new virtual machine, which should make maintenance much easier. So in the future we should always have a up-to-date virtual machine in a timely manner.

The virtual machine uses the standard ova format. VirtualBox has a one-click install ("import appliance"). You should be also able to use the virtual image in VMware but its not as easy to import and you have to use VMware's ovftool. I don't have VMware installed so somebody else should try it out and write instructions...

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@Volker Thanks for your reply! So, should I just use Virtual Box? Is there any performance difference? If not, I don't care which one I use.

( 2011-07-04 13:55:00 -0500 )edit

I would recommend VirtualBox for ease of use. Although I haven't benchmarked them, I don't expect any major differences. Most of Sage is just normal user-space code, and as long as no syscalls are involved all hardware virtualization solutions should run at more or less the same speed.

( 2011-07-05 23:08:26 -0500 )edit

@Volker Okay, I will do that. Thanks for your help.

( 2011-07-06 15:34:42 -0500 )edit

I agree that it is nicer to use this. I think it will be easier to get files between computers because VMWare was sort of a pain.

( 2011-07-09 07:24:48 -0500 )edit

As for native Windows, even a Cygwin version is still somewhat far away. There are some bizarre problems - you can see the sage-windows list for some, though not all, of them.

The VirtualBox instructions were recently updated, though. Can you check out the Windows download page and the new install instructions to see if this helps? And can you give a link to the VMWare instructions you see? It's possible we still have to get rid of some old instructions on the mirrors.

Edit:

• Looks like we should still organize the pages better, or ask the mirrors to update. Another random one I tried didn't even have the newest instructions.
• The VirtualBox instructions should be ok - see this sage-devel thread, for example. At least this particular mirror has accurate instructions.
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@kcrisman

I am answering because I have so few options in the comments I can't really give an effective reply (for example, I can't seem to get a line break with enter or alt enter).

Go to any of the 5 North American mirrors (and probably most other mirrors). All 5 have README-vmware.txt. For example:

http://mirrors.xmission.com/sage/win/...

And, most of them also have README-old.txt which is the exact same thing. These do not apply now that the file has changed to an ova. I've never seen an ova before and have no idea how to do anything with them. I double clicked it and it didn't do anything (I guess it gave some sort of error). I tried to follow the VirtualBox instructions, but using VMWare, and that didn't work because I have no idea what I'm doing.

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