Thanks to the help of Alexander Graf that in 2009 inform me that in that days kvm for powerpc was supporting only the G5, and now on the 2013 tell me that kvm now support G4 . To be onest I haven’t found any information around the web talking about the possibility of the powrerpc G4 to virtualize, even if from the time of born of Mac-on-Linux application in fact mol was virtualizing mac os x 10.3.x and 10.4.x
Writing this post I hope to share something useful for you.
I have wrote this post first on my italian blog . Now I have rewrite it here in my english….
Needed steps to compile kvm and qemu on powerpc
Kvm module compile for powerpc (debian way)
I have followed the steps of Debian Kernel HowTo
Download kernel source ( on my test the 3.9.10 version )
uncompress the source on /usr/src/
make symbolic link in to /usr/src/ to /usr/src/linux
Installs needed package to compile linux kernel
apt-get install module-init-tools kernel-package libncurses5-dev fakeroot
and copy the lubuntu config
cp /boot/config-`uname -r`.
go into the processor option , unset SMP support
go into virtualization option and activate KVM
sudo fakeroot make-kpkg –initrd –append-to-version=kvm_th kernel_image kernel_headers
I have choosed the kvm_th append-to-version
It will create the .deb packages to install with dpkg -i .deb
After installed the generated deb files you will se on /boot folder the new vmlinux e initrd that on my case was:
Now to boot with the generated new linux kernel you need to create the references into /etc/yaboo.conf , you could copy the old paragraph and rename it in “new” and substitude the reference from initrd.old e vmlinux.old to the new installed initrd and vmlinux.
After that you need to install the new yaboot configuration doing sudo ybin -v
At reboot when appear yaboot boot load you need to press tab and choose new option.
In my case, that I have choosed to compile kvm as module after boot with the new kernel I need to type: sudo modprobe kvm
Qemu 1.6.0 Compile
Download qemu 1.6.0 source
sudo apt-get install pkg-config zlib-devel
Unstinall qemu-common package
sudo make install
We need to create a virtual disk into install lubuntu virtualized:
qemu-img create -f qcow2 hdppc.qcow2 5G
To start the installation process:
qemu-system-ppc -enable-kvm -m 384 -vga std -hda hdppc.qcow2 -cdrom Scaricati/lubuntu-13.04-desktop-powerpc.iso -boot d
Doing installation is needed to create the newworld boot partition of 1Mb as I have descripted on my old post (in italian)
The virtual disc now is not bootable with qemu and openbios 1.1 , I need to investigate a way to fix it.
I have the solution provided from Richard WM Jones that is to extract vmlinux and initrd from the virtual disc thanks to the guestfish package that is not included in lubuntu/debian powerpc, so I was able to compile guestfish from source form the libguestfs website and even from the source package of lubuntu, but what I wasn’t able to prepare is the appliance with a qemu vmlinux and initrd runnable on powerpc architecture.
So I have installed guestfish on my ubuntu x86 machine
After installed and updated you can start guestfish on virtual disc ( in my case hdppc.qcow2 )
guestfish –ro -a hdppc.qcow2
qemu-system-ppc -enable-kvm -m 384 -hda hdppc.qcow2 -kernel hdppc_kernel/vmlinux -initrd hdppc_kernel/initrd.img -append “ro root=/dev/sda3”
Now we can help testing different gnu/linux distro for powerpc on our powerpc G4 machines.