[fedora-virt] ANNOUNCE: virt-inspector

Richard W.M. Jones rjones at redhat.com
Tue May 19 14:23:41 UTC 2009

Hi, I'm pleased to announce the first 'really working' version of

  Source is in the libguestfs source repository:
  Binaries are in Koji for Fedora 11 / Rawhide:
  (minimum version 1.0.27 required)

This is a tool based around libguestfs which can inspect a virtual
machine disk image and tell you some interesting things about what's
inside it.

Some of the things it can tell you:

 - What operating system(s) are installed, and what distros and versions.
   It currently covers RHEL releases, Fedora releases, Debian releases,
   and has limited support for Windows.

 - How disk partitions are expected to be mounted (eg. /dev/sda1 -> /boot)

 - What applications are installed.

 - What kernel(s) are installed.

 - What kernel modules are installed.

It can produce output in plain text (as a report) or in XML (to feed
into other programs).

It uses libvirt (if available) to get details of inactive domains, or
you can run it directly on disk images.

Usage is simple:

  virt-inspector --xml domain > info.xml           # xml report

  virt-inspector /path/to/disk.img | less          # plain text report

You can also use it as a wrapper for guestfish, so it mounts the guest
disks in the correct places, eg:

  $ virt-inspector --fish /dev/Guests/CentOS5.img
  guestfish -a /dev/Guests/CentOS5.img -m /dev/VolGroup00/LogVol00:/ -m /dev/sda1:/boot

  $ eval `virt-inspector --fish /dev/Guests/CentOS5.img`
  Welcome to guestfish, the libguestfs filesystem interactive shell for
  editing virtual machine filesystems.
  Type: 'help' for help with commands
        'quit' to quit the shell
  ><fs> mounts
  ><fs> ll /boot/
  total 12151
  drwxr-xr-x  4 root root    1024 May 11 18:16 .
  drwxr-xr-x 22 root root    4096 May 19 05:06 ..
  -rw-r--r--  1 root root  931546 May  7 11:05 System.map-2.6.18-128.1.10.el5
  -rw-r--r--  1 root root  931457 Jan 21 11:10 System.map-2.6.18-128.el5
  -rw-r--r--  1 root root   67942 May  7 11:05 config-2.6.18-128.1.10.el5
  -rw-r--r--  1 root root   67937 Jan 21 11:10 config-2.6.18-128.el5

To do:

 - Lots of testing, particularly with different guests.

 - Answer higher-level questions, eg. "what network drivers will this
   guest use?"  "does this guest need a Xen hypervisor?"

 - Generate a libvirt XML config file (partly overlaps the functionality
   of new 'virsh import|export*' functions:
   http://www.redhat.com/archives/libvir-list/2009-April/msg00401.html )


Richard Jones, Emerging Technologies, Red Hat  http://et.redhat.com/~rjones
virt-p2v converts physical machines to virtual machines.  Boot with a
live CD or over the network (PXE) and turn machines into Xen guests.

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