Virtual machine development environment

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Revision as of 18:28, 12 April 2014 by Beuc (talk | contribs) (Run the VM with Vagrant: fix vm name)

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We provide a development virtual machine (aka FusionForge Sandbox) with an already configured automated tests environment. FusionForge is not pre-installed, it is automatically built using included scripts.

Install Vagrant and VirtualBox

To use the VM, please install Vagrant (>= v1.1). By default Vagrant uses VirtualBox so install it too.

If you're running Debian or Ubuntu, the easiest way is:

aptitude install vagrant virtualbox

VirtualBox recently moved to the "contrib" section, so you need to enable it in your /etc/apt/sources.list:

deb http://ftp.fr.debian.org/debian/ jessie main contrib

Make sure that you enabled hardware virtualization in your computer's BIOS, otherwise VirtualBox may not be able to run the VM.

(Note: if you wish, you can extract the disk image from the .box and use it with KVM, see below.)

Run the VM with Vagrant

vagrant init fusionforge-dev-debian http://fusionforge.fusionforge.org/sandbox/fusionforge-dev-debian.box
# optionaly modify 'Vagrantfile', e.g. enable 'vb.gui' to open the graphics display.
vagrant up
vagrant ssh -- -l root

You can get inspiration from vm/Vagrantfile-sample for the configuration.

If the VM doesn't start, try to launch the VirtualBox manager and start the VM manually: you'll have a more detailed error message.


This VM/appliance is designed to help you get started on development. It's basically a clean Debian system, with a checkout of the FusionForge code and a few helper scripts. Those scripts are in the /usr/src/fusionforge/vm/scripts directory:

  • update.sh will update the sources from Debian FusionForge's Git repository, and also the currently installed packages.
  • build.sh builds FusionForge packages from the sources, and stores them in the package repository at /usr/src/debian-repository/.
  • install.sh installs those FusionForge packages. This should end up with an up-to-date FusionForge running on http://forge.internal/ , with the administrator's login being “admin” and its password being “myadmin”.
  • install-gui.sh optionally sets up an X11 graphical environment.
  • run-testsuite.sh installs Selenium and runs the testsuite

We recommend you run these scripts in order. There's an icon on the VM's Desktop to run build.sh+install.sh, and another one for run-testsuite.sh.

The actual source code is stored under /usr/src/fusionforge, so that's where you should do the changes you want to test.

Accessing the web interface from host - using an internal IP

In the Vagrantfile, add:

config.vm.network :private_network, ip: ""

(replace with any IP that does *not* exist)

And in your host's /etc/hosts, add: forge.internal

Then hit http://forge.internal/ !

Stalled SSH access

If user SSH access to the VM is stalling, check that nscd is installed:

aptitude install unscd

See the thread (1, 2) about this issue.

Running the test suite

(Note: you don't need to do this if you just want to test FusionForge. This is for running the test suite to ensure you didn't break anything when developping.)

First, we need a few manual steps to avoid Firefox self-signed certificate error dialogs when running selenium tests.

  • Connect to the VM with the graphic window enabled (cf. vb.gui above).
  • Close your existing Firefox windows (if any) and run:
firefox -ProfileManager
  • Configure a new Firefox profile in a directory of your choice, e.g. /usr/src/fusionforge/tests/ff-profile-selenium/
  • Still in Firefox, visit https://forge.internal/ and add an exception for the self-signed certificate
  • Close Firefox
  • To run the tests with the corresponding Firefox profile, pass a -firefoxProfileTemplate option to selenium in /usr/src/fusionforge/tests/scripts/phpunit.sh:
PATH=/usr/lib/iceweasel:$PATH LANG=C java -jar /usr/share/selenium/selenium-server.jar -firefoxProfileTemplate /usr/src/fusionforge/tests/ff-profile-selenium/ -singleWindow >/dev/null &

Now you can run /usr/src/fusionforge/vm/scripts/run-testsuite.sh in a terminal (may take a few minutes to start).

Running remotely

If you don't want to install a full GUI on the VM, you can also run the interesting things remotely through SSH using

vagrant ssh -- -l root -X

Note that Selenium needs an X11 display (since it drives a graphical web browser).

You may prefer running the X display inside the VM to start the selenium server, so that windows opened by the tests don't bother you.


To reset the FusionForge admin password

Use: /usr/share/gforge/bin/forge_set_password admin

Accessing the web interface from host - alternative with port redirection

A bit more complicated than using an internal IP, but doesn't need a separate IP.

In the Vagrantfile, add:

config.vm.network :forwarded_port, guest: 80,  host: 8080
config.vm.network :forwarded_port, guest: 443, host: 8443

In /etc/fusionforge/config.ini.d/zzzz-local.ini, add:


And in your host's /etc/hosts, add: forge.internal

Then hit http://forge.internal:8080/ !

Using psql as root

su - postgres -c "psql -c 'CREATE ROLE root WITH LOGIN SUPERUSER'"

Use a stable Git branch

If you want to use the 5.3 stable branch (instead of the development branch), you can:

cd /usr/src/fusionforge/
git checkout debian/5.3

Using QEMU/KVM instead of VirtualBox

Converting from Virtualbox image format to QEMU qcow2

Converting from Virtualbox image format to QEMU qcow2: convert to raw format first

tar xf fusionforge-dev.box fusionforge-dev-disk1.vmdk
VBoxManage clonehd -format RAW fusionforge-dev-disk1.vmdk ffsandbox.raw  # ~10GB

Then optionaly convert to QCOW2 format:

qemu-img convert -f raw -O qcow2 ffsandbox.raw ffsandbox.qcow2

Running inside libvirt

  • Create a VM by importing the created qcow2 disk image, with virt-manager.
  • You may need to set manually the driver type to 'qcow2' in "disk" device section in the VM xml file (in /etc/libvirt/qemu/). In this case you need to redefine the VM xml file by: `sudo virsh -c qemu:///system define /etc/libvirt/qemu/ffsandbox.xml` then start the VM.
  • You need to reconfigure network interfaces in /etc/network/interfaces afterwards for replicating eth0 config stanza for eth1 for instance. You can find which device to enable by running ifconfig -a.
  • You may need to check the web_host setting in /etc/fusionforge/config.ini.d/debian-install.ini to adjust the forge's URLs for redirections.

CentOS variant

A version of the VM for CentOS 6 is available: http://fusionforge.fusionforge.org/sandbox/fusionforge-dev-centos.box

However there are not scripts for this version. You need to build and install FusionForge manually.

Modify the VM

The VM is automatically generated from scratch using the Packer tool. See the Packer configuration in vm/packer/.