As the "kqemu" module is available as source only, we need to compile it. So, better have the kernel headers installed! Assuming you're running a default Etch kernel image (in my case amd64), get everything installed with (as root):
apt-get install kernel-headers-2.6.18-4-amd64 build-essential
To figure out your kernel version:
Now install qemu:
apt-get install qemu qemu-launcher qemuctl kqemu-common kqemu-source
To get the kqemu kernel module installed, we also need
apt-get install module-assistant
To actually compile and install the module type
m-a a-i kqemu
Load the module via
If you like to load it automatically at boot
echo "kqemu" >> /etc/modules
OK, so far, so good: Qemu is installed. Basically Qemu is command line driven, but if you followed my instructions so far you should have installed "qemu-launcher". You'll find a shortcut in the KDE menu or simply type (don't need to be root!):
qemu-launcher. I guess it's rather self explaining. In the "Configuration -> Emulator" tab you'll find the settings for the kqemu module (which of course only works if the module is loaded!): leave it then at "Enabled". To test Qemu I enabled "Use CD-Rom", set RAM to "1024MB", inserted the path to an Ubuntu Egdy CD image and booted it in the virtual machine. I guess it took about 10 minutes to boot to Ubuntu's desktop - but it worked! Network didn't though, but I might do some more tweaking in qemu-launcher to make it work.
Windows 98/2000/XP should also work. As I read in a recent issue of "Linux User" magazine you may need to add a "-no-acpi" option to get Windows 98 running. I didn't find such an option in qemu-launcher, but the command line helps us out here:
qemu -cdrom /dev/cdrom -boot d -m 512 -hda /path/to/dsk.img -no-acpi
OK, what does the above command do?
-cdrom /dev/cdrom - this activates the local CD-Rom drive
-boot -d - boot from CD-Rom drive
-m 512 - expand RAM to 512MB
-hda /path/to/dsk.img - use "dsk.img" as harddisk
You may create a disk image file for Qemu to use as virtual harddisk via:
qemu-img create /path/to/dsk.img 10G
This will create a 10GB image.
I have to say, that Qemu - at least with my Ubuntu Edgy test image - is rather slow compared to VMware server. But it's opensource (at least the latest version...) and if you like to take a short glimpse at different operating systems it should be sufficient.