qubes


Qubes OS 3.2: Resize fedora-23 TemplateVM Root Image 1

Recently, we needed to increase the size of the root image for the fedora-23 TemplateVM.
We had to do this as we wanted to install in /opt a few IDEs, including android-studio which takes a lot of space when accompanied by the Android SDK.

Following the excellent guide at https://www.qubes-os.org/doc/resize-root-disk-image/, we did the following:

  1. Made sure that the fedora-23 TemplateVM and all VMs based on that template were shut down.
    This included stopping the sys-firewall and sys-net VMs as well (in this order).
  2. Then, in the VM Settings window at the Basic tab for the fedora-23 TemplateVM, we disabled the networking by selecting none on the NetVM: drop-down list and pressed OK to apply the settings changes.
  3. Following, in dom0 Terminal Emulator we run the following command:
    truncate -s 40G /var/lib/qubes/vm-templates/fedora-23/root.img;
  4. Afterwards we started the fedora-23 TemplateVM and run the following in the terminal:
    sudo resize2fs /dev/mapper/dmroot;
    Please note that if your output is Nothing to do! then most likely you forgot a VM that is based on the fedora-23 TemplateVM running. Normally your screen should print something along the lines of Resizing the filesystem...
  5. Next, we shut down the fedora-23 TemplateVM, and went to the VM Settings window to enable networking by selecting whatever we had there before (for us it was default (sys-firewall)).
  6. Finally, we could start using our VMs, their root.img were of the new extended size.

Qubes OS: Connect to Wi-Fi or Ethernet or another network

A couple of days ago we decided to give Qubes OS a go and see what it could do for a regular user. The installation was easy as it uses the same installer as Fedora, so we just created a live USB and formatted a laptop that had built in Wi-Fi.

To our surprise, we could not figure out how to change the network settings and activate an internet connection! Going to the NetworkManager (nm), even with root, would show us all fields as disabled when trying to create any new connection!

Some time passed before we realized that the NetworkManager of XFCE4 was not the way to go. After inspecting the Virtual Machines on the Qubes VM Manager, we saw that the sys-net VM was the only one that had in its hardware settings to access the Ethernet and Wi-Fi modules. So we got the hint, we needed to modify sys-net in order to connect the entire OS with its VMs to the network.

To modify the settings of the sys-net VM we needed access to the Settings Application, which was not available in the application menu. So the first thing we did, was to use the sys-net: Add more shortcuts... option under the group ServiceVM: sys-net to enable the Settings application shortcut.

In the [Dom0] Settings: sys-net window, we went to the Applications tab, on the left list we scrolled down to find the Settings option.

After selecting the Settings option, we clicked on the > button to move the Settings option to the right list.

Then we clicked on the OK button to apply the changes.

Going back to the application menu and the group ServiceVM: sys-net we could see the new option for sys-net: Settings.

Clicking on the sys-net: Settings showed us the usual settings manager for Gnome.

From there on, our job was easy, we just clicked on the Network option that gave us the window to modify all network settings. Then we selected the Wi-Fi network that we wanted to connect to, which worked without a hitch!

Finally, we had to test if the configuration was working as expected. From the application menu, under the group Domain: personal, we selected the option personal: Firefox to start the Firefox application on the personal VM.

Once Firefox started we could see that internet connection was active and everything was working as expected!