Windows VM for development under Linux


I’m not fully sure where to put this thread, hope it’s fine here.

So, my main OS is Linux, and I also use Windows for a job. Right now I’m using 2 laptops, 1 for each OS. The goal is to use just one laptop.
Besides dual-boot, I’m considering to try running Windows as VM on Linux host. So, maybe some of you have experience with this setup or successfully running it.

If so, what are the pros and cons of different virtualization options?
What are the hardware demands of such a setup? I mean, it surely depends on the size of the project that will supposedly run on Windows but is full-blown workstation a must.

Looking forward to your experience and bits of advice.

I go the other way round linux VMs on windows host using vmware workstation.

A few of points.

  1. it just works
  2. if you have many vms that use lots of disk writing spec you SSD for this or use a HD.
  3. snapshots are you best friend.
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The other way around works just as well.
As long as you don’t need a proper GPU in the VM, it’ll be fine.

The specifics depend a bit on what Distro you are running. Overall, qemu/kvm/libvirt works perfectlyfine. Gnome-Boxes is a great frontend if you don’t want to configure a lot. Virtmanager works great if you do.
In both cases i’d recommend using spice to connect to the VM and install proper Spice drivers in the Windows VM.
Virtual Box is also available for Linux and is more of a One-Stop-Shop.

The performance of the VM depends a lot on how much resources you can devote to running it. There certainly is a bit of Virtualization overhead, but in general, it will run close to as it would on similar hardware. So, 1 Core and 2G Ram and you won’t have a great time, 2 Cores and 4-8G Ram is certainly enough for productive usage. The rest depends on what you plan to do with it exactly.

Could you post the system specs?

Guess you’ll need some cores and spare ram for the VM. Not an expert tho.

you need a CPU with support for VT-x or VT-d, enough RAM and CPU to run both OSs simultaneously, and enough free space on your harddrive for a disk image to install Windows and all of your Windows software & files to.

As far as software goes, just install KVM+Libvirt on your linux host, grab virt-manager and start setting it up.

Thanks for responses.

So, I started up with KVM/QEMU with Virt Manager frontend.
I found old HDD with win10 install which I don’t care about, put it in the enclosure and test a bit. I managed to boot it, but windows stuck in Automatic repair -> Reboot.
I will format it anyway, and start fresh.
After It hopefully works fine, I’ll transfer to SSD install.

As of hardware, I can give it 1 core and 8GB of RAM. Soon, I should upgrade to 4910mq and will be able to give it 2 cores.