2020/02/07 • 2 min read

Boxing our custom CentOS 7 for Vagrant to manage a virtual machine environment, Part 1

Yes, we can use one of the CentOS 7 boxes available for Vagrant, but what if we want to package CentOS 7 with customizations of our own. Besides, it’s good to know how the boxing of the operating system can be done. In this article, we’ll go through the steps to create a VirtualBox VM with CentOS 7 and how to box it for distribution with vagrant


Tools needed 


  • Get   Vagrant and install it on our computer. This step is required even if you want to directly use an official CentOS 7 image with no custom tweaks.  
  • Install   VirtualBox, as a virtualization product. 
  • Get the latest CentOS 7 minimal   ISO 


Creating the VM 


  • In VirtualBox, create a new VM (CTRL+N), providing a name, type Linux and version Red Hat (64-bit), and click on Next

Figure 1: Choosing VM name and operating system 

  • You may specify the memory size for the VM, but this can be changed later, and click on Next

Figure 2: Choosing memory size

  • You need to choose the option to create a virtual hard disk for your VM before you click on Create 

Figure 3: Choosing disk size

  • Choose VirtualBox Disk Image as your hard disk file type and click on Next 

Figure 4: Choosing hard disk file type 

  • Specify the type of storage you want for your physical hard disk and click on Next

Figure 5: Choosing disk storage allocation

  • Specify the max size you want for your VM disk and click on Create 

Figure 6: Choosing disk location and size

  • A new VM is added to the list displayed on VirtualBox

Figure 7: VirtualBox Manager with new VM 



Configuring the VM 


  • Choose the VM you just created and click on settings (CTRL+S). The settings window opens, displaying the General tab. Nothing to do here

Figure 8: New VM general settings

  • Move to the system tab, if you want to change the memory or number of CPUs to allocate to the VM

Figure 9: New VM system settings

  • Move to the display tab where you can change, for example, the number of monitors you want to use with the VM

Figure 10: New VM display settings

  • Move to the storage tab and select the Empty controller

Figure 11: New VM storage settings

  • Add the CentOS 7 minimal ISO you’ve previously downloaded

Figure 12: New VM storage settings – selecting the CentOS 7 minimal ISO

  • Move to the Audio tab and uncheck the Audio since it won’t be needed

Figure 13: New VM audio settings

  • Move to the Network tab and confirm that the Adapter 1 is set to NAT

Figure 14: New VM network settings

  • Nothing to do on the Serial Ports tab, so move to the USB tab and uncheck the USB controller

Figure 15: New VM USB settings

  • You can add a shared folder later and there is nothing to do on the User Interface tab, so click OK to finish


In this first part, of our three-part article, we have seen how to set up the VM initial configuration. We will continue with the CentOS 7 installation process on the next one

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