Ubuntu 14.04 and above in a Generation 2 Hyper-V Virtual Machine (VM)

Ubuntu 14.04 and above in a Generation 2 Hyper-V Virtual Machine (VM)

As most of you know, a Generation 2 Hyper-V Virtual Machine is generally reserved for Windows 2012 or 64 bit versions of Windows 8 as the New virtual Machine Wizard specifies:

Generation 2

This virtual machine generation provides support for features such as Secure Boot, SCSI boot, and PXE boot using a standard network adapter. Guest operating systems must be running at least Windows Server 2012 or 64-bit versions of Windows 8.

This was true until recently when Ubuntu released version 14.04 (currently 14.10 is also available). Ubuntu 14.04 is the first linux release to support running inside a Generation 2 Virtual Machine. Needless to say you are going to need the 64 bit version.

The key to get this running is that you need to disable Secure Boot. This needs to be done before you commence the installation of the OS in the VM.

  • Go into the VM Settings
    • Hardware
      • Firmware
        • On the top there is a “Secure Boot” option. Disable the checkbox on “Enable Secure Boot”

As the window indicates:

Secure Boot is a feature that helps prevent unauthorized code from running at boot time. It is recommended that you enable this setting.

Just disregard the recommendation. As mentioned this is required to run Ubuntu on a Generation 2 VM. If you are running Windows 2012 or Windows 8 and above you might want to follow the recommendation (and default setting) of using Secure Boot.

The Integration Services offered by Ubuntu have improved and not only will you be able to enjoy some of the Gen 2 improvements but also things like Dynamic memory being available during the installation process and online backup. It’s pretty nice that Ubuntu is supporting Hyper-V features making it a viable option when deploying linux VMs on Hyper-V.

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