QEMU on Windows

After fumbling around with various downloads and patches, I was able to find a working QEMU build for windows. I am running Windows 7 64-bit, and I wanted to run an ARM system (specifically, to develop for a Stratus plug computer). Before this, I was running a virtualized Ubuntu using VirtualBox and then running QEMU within that. Performance was not noticeably bad.

However, I had problems bridging the QEMU to the Ubuntu host, which was bridged itself. I stumbled upon a page about emulating a Rasberry Pi within QEMU on Windows. The QEMU download link there was the ticket.

Ignore the rest of the post there, all you need is QEMU. Using the kernel and ramdisk here (and instructions from here), you can install Debian on your ARM system.

To launch, first create or download a disk image. Then copy the qemu-system-arm.exe from the bin folder to QEMU’s root folder (it was easier than specifying the paths manually). Then, you can modify the last line in the batch file provided (qemu-win.bat):

qemu-system-arm.exe -M versatilepb -L . -m 256 -hda arm.img.backup -kernel vmlinuz-2.6.32-5-versatile -initrd initrd.img-2.6.32-5-versatile -localtime -append "root=/dev/sda1"

That’s assuming your image and kernels are named as such. The kernel will crash if you try to specify more than 256MB of RAM, however building a custom kernel is now possible.

My next task will be to see if I can bridge the network interface. If not, I’ll go back and try the virtual virtual machine approach again–since appears to be faster anyway…

Winows(QEMU) vs Windows(Ubuntu(QEMU))