Build a virtual appliance 0.6

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Main Page > Development > Build a virtual appliance

Below are instructions for building your own Archivematica virtual appliance. This allows you to create intermediate or branch releases to test and use your own modifications.


  • Ubuntu server 10.04
  • vmbuilder requires KVM which requires a virt compatible processor however, you do not need virt support for vmbuilder
  • At least 2GB of ram

Software Requirements

subversion (SVN)

sudo apt-get install subversion


sudo apt-get install ubuntu-vm-builder

A local apt-proxy. We recomend apt-cacher-ng.

sudo aptitude install apt-cacher-ng
sudo gedit /etc/apt-cacher-ng/acng.conf

change the port.. whatever its set to..(3142 defuault) to 9999 Restart the service for changes to take effect.

sudo /etc/init.d/apt-cacher-ng restart

Pre Build

1. check out the source

svn checkout archivematica-read-only

2. Modify archivematica-read-only/trunk/archivematica.cfg to resemble your file system IE:

 execscript = /home/demo/trunk/ 

should be

 execscript = /home/yourhomefolder/archivematica-read-only/trunk/ 

3. Build archivematica for your hosts virtualization platform. All the following commands will build the same virtual machine.. each for a different platform

sudo vmbuilder vmserver ubuntu -c archivematica.cfg
sudo vmbuilder xen ubuntu -c archivematica.cfg
sudo vmbuilder kvm ubuntu -c archivematica.cfg

Post Build

1. boot your virtual machine. For KVM its under ubuntu-kvm, for other examples please see Virtual_appliance_instructions.

kvm -m 528 -smp 1 -drive file=disk0.qcow2 

2. From inside the machine open a terminal and run the following (password is demo)

incrontab /etc/
sudo mysqladmin create ica-atom
sudo mysqladmin create dcb
sudo mysqladmin create dashboard
sudo chmod 444 ~/.config/xfce4/panel/*
sudo chmod 444 ~/.config/xfce4/panel

3. Open firefox and navigate to http://localhost, go through the qubit installer for the database settings all defaults will work.

4. Aside from some icon placement you now have a fully functional version of archivematica!

Create a .raw file

1. A raw file can be used to run the virtual appliance directly from a USB key or to install it directly on dedicated hardware without a virtualization layer.

2. after running vmbuilder you will be left with a qcow2 image. Run the following command:

kvm-img convert -f qcow2 -O raw disk0.qcow2 archivematica.raw

3. See Build a Live USB disk for instructions on using the .raw file to create a bootable USB key version of Archivematica