From KVM


Some facts:

  • Installing Windows 7 with IDE drivers requires about 12 hours (qemu-kvm 0.12.5)
  • Windows 7 can be installed with virtio disk (requires guest drivers during installation)
  • Windows 7 64-bit requires signed drivers (available from August 2010 - thanks to RedHat)
  • Installation with virtio drivers works well, but Windows might not reboot at the end (see troubleshooting)

Signed guest drivers are available here:

Installation steps

  • Download the guest drivers
  • Configure the virtual disk as virtio
  • Start the installation
    • When the installer asks you to select a drive, load the virtio driver (viostor)
    • The installation should take 45 to 60 minutes

If you don't want to swap the CD, configure 2 CD-ROM devices. Use the guest drivers disc as the first CD-ROM device, and Windows installation disc as the second device, or else it won't boot.

Once installed, if you did choose virtio for the network card, you will also need to update the driver.


Cannot boot - broken MBR

Upon reboot, the screen displays:

Starting SeaBIOS (version 0.5.1-20100825_131917-polaris)

Booting from Hard Disk...

The libvirt log shows

kvm: unhandled exit 80000021
kvm_run returned -22

The solution is to reinstall the MBR. Here is a tutorial for doing this: