Installing CentOS 8.1 GUI with Oracle VM VirtualBox on Windows 10

Installing CentOS 8.1 GUI with Oracle VM VirtualBox on Windows 10 - TutLinks
Installing CentOS 8.1 GUI with Oracle VM VirtualBox on Windows 10 – TutLinks

In this tutorial you will learn how to install CentOS 8.1 Linux Operating system on Oracle VM VirtualBox on Windows 10 OS.

Steps 1 through Step 8 is like setting up the infrastructure. For example, assume you are buying a new PC or Laptop. You might want to have a proper configuration like Hard Disk and RAM. The Steps 1 to Step 8 will help us configure that infrastructure. Next set of steps will focus on installing the OS of the choice (in our case CentOS 8.1) on this configuration.

Step 1: Download CentOS 8.1 ISO

Download the CentOS-8.1.1911-x86_64-dvd1.iso from nearest mirror to your location. You can choose the nearest possible mirror from the CentOS downloads mirror list page here. Alternatively you can visit this url to download CentOS 8.1.1911 from Mirror.

I’m downloading CentOS 8.1 from Asia India mirror http://centos.excellmedia.net/8.1.1911/isos/x86_64/CentOS-8.1.1911-x86_64-dvd1.iso

Download CentOS 8.1.1911 ISO
Download CentOS 8.1 ISO CentOS-8.1.1911-x86_64-dvd1.iso

Step 2: Install Oracle VM Virtualbox 6.0

Download the Oracle VM VirtualBox from the offical Oracle VM VirtualBox downloads page. Ensure you have at least version Oracle VM VirtualBox 6.0 installed on your Windows 10 PC.

Install Oracle VM Virtualbox 6.0
CentOS 8.1 : Install Oracle VM Virtualbox 6.0

Step 3: Create CentOS 8.1 VM

Click on New button and open the Create Virtual Machine wizard. Type the Name of your choice for the instance of CentOS 8.1 being installed. I would like to name it CentOS8.1. Ensure the Type of the VM is Linux and Version is Red Hat (64-bit) and click Next.

Create CentOS 8.1 VM
Create CentOS 8.1 VM

Step 4: Configure Memory Size

Configure the Memory Size (RAM) in megabytes. Set this to atleast 2048MB. This means we are creating a CentOS 8.1 virtual machine with 2GB RAM.

Note: Ensure that your actual PC or Laptop has enough RAM. If your PC is having just 2GB RM, then this setting is not recommended. In that case set VM’s memory size to 1024MB or 1GB. But this might have serious performance lags.

Configure Memory Size
CentOS 8.1 : Configure Memory Size

Step 5: Configure Hard Disk

In the Hard disk wizard step of the CentOS 8.1 Virtual Machine creation, choose the option Create a virtual hard disk now and click Next.

Configure Hard Disk
CentOS 8.1 : Configure Hard Disk

Step 6: Choose Hard Disk File Type

Choose the Hard disk file type as VDI (VirtualBox Disk Image) and click Next.

Choose Hard Disk File Type
CentOS 8.1 : Choose Hard Disk File Type

Step 7: Storage on Physical Hard Disk

Choose the option Dynamically allocated Storage on physical hard disk. The advantage of Dynamically allocated storage is that the hard disk file will only consume the physical hard disk space as it gets filled up (max size is limited to the size of the virtual hard disk which will be configured in the next step), although it will not shrink automatically when the space is freed.

Storage on Physical Hard Disk
CentOS 8.1 : Storage on Physical Hard Disk

Once you choose the option, click Next.

Step 8: Configure Virtual Hard Disk location & Storage Capacity

Choose the location where the Virtual Hard Disk used by the CentOS 8.1 VM need to be saved. Also set the Size of the virtual hard disk as per your need. It is best to have a minimum of 10GB. I go with 15GB for the size of virtual hard disk. Click Next to proceed mouting the CentOS 8.1 ISO.

Configure Virtual Hard Disk location & Storage Capacity
CentOS 8.1 : Configure Virtual Hard Disk location & Storage Capacity

Step 9: Mount CentOS 8.1 ISO from Settings

Mount CentOS 8.1 ISO from Settings
CentOS 8.1 : Mount CentOS 8.1 ISO from Settings of VM

Now we have configured the infrastructure like RAM and Virtual HDD for our CentOS 8.1, now we will install CentOS 8.1 on this infrastructure. You will see the name of the VM you gave during step 3 in the Oracle VM VirtualBox Manager in the left panel. Right Click on it. Under the settings (ctrl + s) navigate to Storage -> Controller IDE -> Optical Drive. Click on the logo that looks like CD or Optical Drive and select the option to Choose Virtual Optical Disk File....

Locate and Open the CentOS-8.1.1911-x86_64-dvd1.iso. This is the ISO file we have downloaded in the step 1 and click OK.

Step 10: Start Virtualbox

Start Virtualbox
CentOS 8.1 : Start Virtualbox

Go back to Oracle VM VirtualBox Manager and highlight the CentOS8.1 VM. Right click and choose to start the virtual machine. Now we will configure CentOS 8.1 during the first ever boot up of the CentOS 8.1 that happens now.

Step 11: Install CentOS 8.1

Install CentOS 8.1 on Oracle VM Virtualbox
CentOS 8.1 : Install CentOS 8.1

You will see the CentOS Linux 8 screen with options

  • Install CentOS Linux 8
  • Test this media & install CentOS Linux 8
  • Troubleshooting

Select the option to Install CentOS Linux 8 and hit enter to proceed.

Tip: How Move Mouse In & Out of VM

How Move Mouse In & Out of VM
CentOS 8.1 : How Move Mouse In & Out of VM

To move in and out of the virtual machine, you can hit right Ctrl key.

Step 12: OS Language Selection

OS Language Selection
CentOS 8.1 : OS Language Selection

After a while you will land on the Welcome to CentOS Linux 8 installation GUI screen to select language of the CentOS 8.1. Choose English or any language of your choice. Also choose the dialect if available once you choose the language. This probably will be the keyboard layout. But you can also configure to have multiple keyboard layouts in coming steps. Once done with langugae selection, click Continue button.

Step 13: Choose OS Installation Directory

Choose OS Installation Directory
CentOS 8.1 : Choose OS Installation Directory

Next you will be prompted to choose the installation directory. Here you can configure the disk addition, storage configuration too. Select Local Standard Disks that is available with 15GB free space which we have configured in step 8. Also choose Storage Configuration to be of type Automatic and click Done.

Step 14: Configure Software Selection – Server with GUI

Configure Software Selection : Server with GUI
CentOS 8.1 : Configure Software Selection : Server with GUI

In the Software selection wizard step, select the Base Environment as Server with GUI. Choosing Server with GUI option will enable to interact with CentOS 8.1 in a graphical user interface mode. Click Done to proceed to next steps.

Step 15: Configure Network & Host Name

Configure Network & Host Name
CentOS 8.1 : Configure Network & Host Name

To enable internet access from host PC to virtual machine instance of CentOS 8.1, toggle Ethernet(enp0s3) button to ON. Also set the Host Name to the name of your choice and click Apply. I will be giving tutlinks as host name and click Apply. Once you are satisfied with changes click Done button at the top left.

Step 16: Select or Add multiple Keyboard Layouts

Select or Add multiple Keyboard Layouts
CentOS 8.1 : Select or Add multiple Keyboard Layouts

As mentioned earlier, you can add multiple keyboard layouts based on the need and click Done.

Step 17: Set Time & Date, Region & City

Set Time & Date, Region & City
CentOS 8.1 : Set Time & Date, Region & City

Set the Region, city time and date on the basis of your respective location and click Done.

Step 18: Begin CentOS 8.1 Installation

Begin CentOS 8.1 Installation
CentOS 8.1 : Begin CentOS 8.1 Installation

With the configured settings in place such as language of the OS being installed, keyboard layout configuration, time, region etc., we can go ahead and begin CentOS 8.1 installation. The installation will take approximately 30 minutes to complete.

Step 19: Create a User

Create a User
CentOS 8.1 : Create a User

Meanwhile the installation continues, we need to create a user. We can use this user to login to the CentOS 8.1 VM. Click on User Creation option. Give Full name, username, password and confirm password. Click Done. Remember the password for the user being created.

Step 20: Set Root Password

Set Root Password
CentOS 8.1 : Set Root Password

You also need to set root password. A root password is like the administrator password with which you can have full control over the CentOS 8.1 operating system. Few examples like software installs, changing directory permissions need to have root access. Remember the root password and store it in a safe and secure place or memorize it.

Step 21: Reboot the OS

Reboot the OS
CentOS 8.1 : Installation Success. Reboot!

After the installation completes successfully, you will find the button to Reboot the OS. Click on Reboot to start using the CentOS 8.1

Step 22: Reboot loads ISO again Close it

Close if Reboot loads ISO again
CentOS 8.1 : Close if Reboot loads ISO again

During the reboot, as we still have the CentOS-8.1.1911-x86_64-dvd1.iso loaded on our Controller IDE, the VM will try to load the ISO again. So Close the CentOS8.1 Running Oracle VM VirtualBox window and proceed to next step.

Step 23: Un-mount ISO from Settings

Un-mount ISO from Settings
CentOS 8.1 : Un-mount ISO from Settings

In the settings of the CentOS8.1 VM, open settings (ctrl+s) and navigate to Storage -> Controller:IDE. Click the icon that looks like Compact Disk and click the option to Remove Disk from Virtual Drive. This will unmount the ISO from the virtual machine and prevents the starts and reboots from loading ISO again.

Step 24: Start CentOS 8.1

Start CentOS 8.1
CentOS 8.1 : Start CentOS 8.1

Now, go back to Oracle VM VirtualBox Manager and highlight the CentOS8.1 VM. Right click and choose to start the virtual machine. Choose the default highlighted option CentOS Linux (4.18.0-147.e18.x86_64) 8 (Core) and hit enter to proceed.

Step 25: Accept Licensing Information

Accept Licensing Information
CentOS 8.1 : Accept Licensing Information

After a while for the first time boot of the CentOS 8.1, you will be prompted to accept the Licence Information. Check the I accept the license agreement. check box and click Done.

Step 26: Finish Configuration

Finish Configuration
CentOS 8.1 : Finish Configuration

Click on FINISH CONFIGURATION button to proceed to user login screen.

Step 27: Sign In with user Created

Sign In to CentOS 8.1 with user Created
Sign In to CentOS 8.1 with user Created

Once you are on the User Login Screen, provide password for the user you created in step 19 and click Sign In button. This password is not to be confused with root password.

CentOS 8.1 Home Screen
CentOS 8.1 Home Screen

Step 28: Verify Internet Access in CentOS 8.1 VM

Verify Internet Access in CentOS 8.1 VM
Verify Internet Access in CentOS 8.1 VM

Once you logged into the CentOS 8.1 successfully, open the Firefox and browse website of your choice.

Video Tutorial

You can go through the following tutorial that has step by step tutorial on how to install and configure CentOS 8.1 with Oracle VM VirtualBox.

Following are the sequence of steps that happen in the video at time (min:sec)

Step 1: Download CentOS 8.1 (00:10)
Step 2: Install Oracle VM VirtualBox 6.0 (00:42)
Step 3: Create CentOS 8.1 VM (00:48)
Step 4: Configure Memory Size (00:59)
Step 5: Configure Hard Disk (01:01)
Step 6: Choose Hard Disk File Type (01:04)
Step 7: Storage on Physical Hard Disk (01:06)
Step 8: Configure Virtual Hard Disk location & Storage Capacity (01:10)
Step 9: Mount CentOS 8.1 ISO from Settings (01:19)
Step 10: Start VirtualBox (1:36)
Step 11: Install CentOS 8.1 (01:41)
Tip: How Move Mouse In & Out of VM (01:47)
Step 12: OS Language Selection (02:05)
Step 13: Choose OS Installation Directory (02:12)
Step 14: Configure Software Selection : Server with GUI (02:22)
Step 15: Configure Network & Host Name (02:35)
Step 16: Select Keyboard Layouts (02:51)
Step 17: Set Time & Date, Region & City (03:05)
Step 18: Begin CentOS 8.1 Installation (03:18)
Step 19: Create a User (03:23)
Step 20: Set Root Password (03:43)
Step 21: Reboot the OS (04:11)
Step 22: Close if Reboot loads ISO again(04:24)
Step 23: Un-mount ISO from Settings (04:33)
Step 24: Start CentOS 8.1 (04:44)
Step 25: Accept Licensing Information (05:04)
Step 26: Finish Configuration (05:11)
Step 27: Sign In with user Created (05:16)
Step 28: Verify Internet Access in CentOS 8.1 VM (05:42)

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