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How can I start a Windows virtual machine in kvm on boot in fullscreen mode, in a way that the fact that Windows is running virtualized is completely hidden from the windows user ?

Basically after booting the kvm host, Windows should come up and the underlying kvm host should be completely hidden.

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So I don't think that you can do that without a few tricks.

Namely, you don't want your user to see the VM through the virt-manager, which requires admin rights, but rather through a vnc client.

So:

1) Make sure to install the vm with vnc enabled, which is the case by default but that you can ensure by giving the --graphics vnc command to virt-install

2) Write a script that will be loaded at boot time (e.g on a debian)

  • Write it in /etc/init.d/script.sh
  • chmod +x /etc/init.d/script.sh
  • update-rc.d script.sh defaults 100

3) The content of the script should boot the vm and call a vnc client to log in:

  • virsh start [your machine name]
  • vinagre -f 127.0.0.1 -n

If you're using vinagre as the client here. Here the trick is to add the n switch to hide the vnc client top windows, but you might want to disable shortcut such as alt + F4 to make sure that the user cannot kill the process and fall back to the linux desktop.

Indeed this is a dirty solution, and not a perfect one. You might want to try several vnc client and see what you can do to "hide" the fact that it's a vnc client.

  • Thanks for the input. Since it looks like there is no "official" way of doing what I need, I think there is an easier solution: Start no display manager at all on system boot, but only a script which starts a blank X11 and then the virtual machine with virsh or directly the kvm command line. – yglodt Aug 9 '15 at 18:45

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