I want to replace Windows Server 2012 R2 and Hyper-V on my homeserver with CentOS and KVM. My plan is to virtualize one Windows 8.1 machine and several smaller Linux machines like on Hyper-V, there is no need to migrate, I'll start from scratch. I also want to use PCIe Passthrough to pass my Tevii S471 to a guest, and yes my CPU and MB support VT-d (Xeon 1245v3 on a Gigabyte GA-Z87X-UD5H).

Should I use CentOS 7? Also I probably have to switch to the latest stable Kernel to provide compatibility for PCIe passthrough am I right?

I don't know which interface to use, because for simple tasks I want to use a webif. What about oVirt? Or is there anything better for my purposes? I already virtualized with KVM under Arch Linux on the same board and CPU with libvirt and VMM, but VMM is a PITA to use and it creates pretty outdated templates.


To use PCI Express passthrough you will need to set the virtual machine's chipset to Q35, which is a relatively new and still somewhat experimental option in QEMU/KVM, and can only be done at virtual machine creation. It exists in Fedora and CentOS 7, but I would probably choose Fedora so that you can be sure to get future upgraes for this feature. (In fact, I did just that when I set up a new hypervisor last week.) Remember that CentOS is a clone of RHEL, which values stability over features and might or might not ship updates (such as bug fixes) which you will be interested in.

  • Alright I'll try Fedora, never used it but I think it doesn't differ much from CentOS. Is there any webinterface which let's me choose which chipset to use or do I have to create Q35 VMs from the terminal CLI? – shawly Feb 23 '15 at 14:29
  • I just use virt-manager. – Michael Hampton Feb 23 '15 at 14:39
  • Because like I said, I only used virt-manager the last time but in the end it created pretty crappy configurations so I had to edit them manually. So I hoped I'd find an interface where I can edit the VMs, since I want to run the server headless. – shawly Feb 23 '15 at 14:40

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