Setup libvirt.

Libvirt ZFS Dataset

To keep my libvirt setup outside of any boot environments I give them their own dataset.

zfs create -o mountpoint=legacy vault/sys/chin/var/lib/libvirt mkdir /var/lib/libvirt mount -t zfs vault/sys/chin/var/lib/libvirt /var/lib/libvirt

Add to fstab

nano /etc/fstab
vault/sys/chin/var/lib/libvirt /var/lib/libvirt zfs rw,relatime,xattr,noacl 0 0


Check modules are loaded.

lsmod | grep kvm lsmod | grep virtio

If blank, load them explicitly.

echo "virtio" > /etc/modules-load.d/virtio.conf

Install the dependencies.

pacman -S libvirt qemu-headless ebtables dnsmasq bridge-utils virt-manager virt-viewer ovmf

ZVOL Backing Store

I like to use ZFS ZVOL's as my backing store.


Create a dataset for ZVOLs:

zfs create -o mountpoint=none vault/zvols
User ZVOLs

Create a dataset for user 'john''s ZVOLs

zfs create -o mountpoint=none vault/zvols/john

As of zfsonlinux 0.7.0 ZFS delegation using zfs allow works on linux. Delegate permissions giving the abiity to snapshot and create datasets.

zfs allow john create,mount,mountpoint,snapshot vault/zvols/john

Create ZVOL

To let guest do its own caching, use:

  • primarycache=metadata

Create ZVOL for a new VM. Replace with name. Volumes still need to be created by root.

zfs create -o mountpoint=none vault/zvols/john/libvirt zfs create -V 50G vault/zvols/john/libvirt/<new VM> -o primarycache=metadata -o compression=on


By default, anybody in the wheel group can authenticate with polkit as defined in /etc/polkit-1/rules.d/50-default.rules (see Polkit#Administrator identities).

If you want passwordless authentication, as of libvirt 1.2.16, anyone in the libvirt group can access to the RW daemon socket by default.

Create the group if it doesn't exist.

groupadd libvirt

Add any users required to it.

gpasswd -a john libvirt

Make sure to re-login after.

System Service

Enable libvirtd.service.

systemctl enable --now libvirtd

To run only a user-session the daemon does not need to be enabled.


Test libvirt system-session:

virsh -c qemu:///system

Test libvirt system user-session:

virsh -c qemu:///session


Add the following to /etc/libvirt/qemu.conf.

nano /etc/libvirt/qemu.conf
nvram = [ "/usr/share/ovmf/ovmf_code_x64.bin:/usr/share/ovmf/ovmf_vars_x64.bin" ]

I have found UEFI may not work if I haven't set the system user to user = root in /etc/libvirt/qemu.conf.

and restart libvirtd

systemctl restart libvirtd


To use uefi as a user, note networking options are limited, move the nvram to a user readable location and add it to ~/.config/libvirt/qemu.conf.

cp -r /usr/share/ovmf /home/john/.config/libvirt/ovmf chown -R john:john /home/john/.config/libvirt/ovmf

Add the following to /etc/libvirt/qemu.conf.

nano ~/.config/libvirt/qemu.conf
nvram = [ "/home/john/.config/libvirt/ovmf/ovmf_code_x64.bin:/home/john/.config/libvirt/ovmf/ovmf_vars_x64.bin" ]

Create Guest

Use virsh or virt manager.


Select virtIO Network and storage for best performance. Select ZVOL raw device. Mine was /dev/vault/zvols/john/libvirt/<new VM>.

ZVOL Persistance

If using a user session the block device might need to be changed to be owned by the user running the VM.

Temporarily the device can be chown'd, but the owner will not live through reboot. For persistence add a udev rule by creating a new file 99-local-zvol.rules in /etc/udev/rules.d/ that contains the following (replacing the ZVOL path and user):

# /etc/udev/rules.d/99-local-zvol.rules # Give persistant ownership of ZVOL to user KERNEL=="zd*" SUBSYSTEM=="block" ACTION=="add|change" PROGRAM="/lib/udev/zvol_id /dev/%k" RESULT=="vault/zvols/john/libvirt/win" OWNER="john" GROUP="john" MODE="0750"

Refresh the rules with udevadm control --reload


Install drivers:

I downloaded ISO and attached the drivers pre-install.

At the "Where do you want to install Windows?" screen, select the option Load Drivers, uncheck the box for "Hide drivers that aren't compatible with this computer's hardware".

Browse to the wanted driver(s) at:

SCSI: "viostor\w10\amd64" Networking: "NetKVM\w10\amd64"


To use another interface, don't configure anything on the host and select macvtap passthrough, and select the interface.

Install then reboot.

results matching ""

    No results matching ""