How to install Ubuntu 7.10 (Gutsy Gibbon) in Parallels Desktop for OS X

by Ross McKillop on November 1, 2007

Linux Mac

This tutorial will guide you through installing Ubuntu 7.10 (Gutsy Gibbon) using Parallels Desktop 6.0 for MacParallels Desktop for Mac. There are a number of ways you can try to install Ubuntu 7.10 in Parallels Desktop, as found in this thread on the Parallels Support Forums – but I spent a couple of hours trying each one, and had no luck. Other folks did have luck with some of those methods, so you may want to give them a shot, because the method I outline is a bit time consuming. With all of that said, the good folks who develop Parallels have mentioned that they are currently working on better support, so this tutorial itself is probably “time limited” – as in it won’t be necessary in a few weeks/months.

If you already have Ubuntu 7.04 (Feisty Fawn) installed in Parallels, and you’re using build 5540 of Parallels Desktop, you can skip down to step 15 below.

If you don’t have Ubuntu installed, what we’re going to do is install 7.04 in Parallels, and then upgrade it to 7.10. To do so – start at step 1 below.

  1. To get started, download Ubuntu 7.04.
  2. Once the download has completed, open Parallels. If the OS Installation Assistant wizard doesn’t launch on its own, select File -> New…. Choose Custom as the installation mode, and then click Next.
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  4. For the OS Type select Linux, and for the OS Version select Ubuntu Linux.
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  6. Select the amount of RAM you would like to dedicate to Ubuntu. 512MB is a pretty good number – people have reported issues going higher than that, and Ubuntu can be a bit sluggish if you go much below 256.
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  8. Select Create a new hard disk image and then click Next.
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  10. Specify how much hard disk space you would like to dedicate to Ubuntu. If you also choose Expanding (which I recommend) – you won’t actually use all of that space until Ubuntu needs it. Click Next when you’re ready to continue.
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  12. Select Shared Networking and once again, click Next.
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  14. Give your OS a name (something descriptive is good, but call it whatever you want) and as always, click Next.
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  16. Determine which you would rather have perform “better” the guest OS (Ubuntu in this case) or OS X. You guessed it – click Next.
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  18. Before you get excited and click Finish, select the small arrow next to More Options. Select ISO and then click the Choose… button.
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  20. Navigate to the .iso file that you downloaded way back in step 1. Select it and click Open.
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  22. Make sure that Start Ubuntu Linux installation is selected, and now you can finally click Finish.
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  24. Click the green Start Virtual Machine button from the right column.
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  26. At this point you will boot into Ubuntu, and you’ll need to install the OS by double-clicking the Install icon on the desktop. If you’d like help going step by step through that, please see the installing Ubuntu section of this FAQ. After you have 7.04 totally installed, make sure to install Parallels Tools as well. Once you’re done, continue with step 15 below.
  27.  Now use the Update Manager to get your Ubuntu 7.04 totally up to date. Select System -> Administration -> Update Manager. Make sure absolutely everything is selected (which it should be by default) and then click Install Updates.
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  29. Once that’s complete, click Close. You’ll probably need to restart your system, so do that now.
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  31. When Ubuntu is back up, again run the Update Manager (System -> Administration -> Update Manager). This time, you should see a New distribution release 7.10 is available section. Click the Upgrade button.
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  33. The Release Notes window will appear – again, click Upgrade.
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  35. And watch as the update begins.
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  37. If you get a Support for some applications ended window, just click Close.
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  39. When asked if you want to start the upgrade, click Start Upgrade.
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  41. And once again watch as Ubuntu updates….
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  43. If you’re asked to remove obsolete packages, click Remove.
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  45. And once it’s done, click Restart.
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  47. Do not be surprised if you get an error and the screen ‘enlarges’ and then ‘shrinks’ a few times. Give it another few seconds…
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  49. And you’ll get to your new Ubuntu 7.10 Gutsy Gibbon desktop! Parallels Tools should be working by default (assuming you installed them while you were running 7.04).
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