Creating a Lubuntu Virtual Machine with Parallels for Mac

Creating a Lubuntu 12.04 Virtual Machine with Parallels Desktop 9 for Mac.


We describe here, how to create a Lubuntu-based virtual machine (VM) with Parallels (virtualization software for Mac), to be used in a Macbook.
This post assumes the reader is familiar with Linux and a virtualization application such as Virtualbox or Parallels.The goal here is to create a fast, light and clean software development environment mainly to work with open source technologies such as Java and/or Ruby On Rails.

Technologies we use in this post

  • Linux Lubuntu 12.04 (
    Why we are using Lubuntu:
    Lubuntu is an Open Source, fast and lightweight operating system, focused on speed and energy-efficiency. The core of the system is based on Linux and Ubuntu. Lubuntu uses the minimal desktop LXDE, and a selection of light applications. Because of this, Lubuntu has very low hardware requirements.
  • Lubuntu 12.04 (Precise Pangolin)
  • Parallels Desktop 9 for Mac)
    Parallels Desktop for Mac is a hardware emulation virtualization software.
  • OS X 10.9.1 Mavericks


  1. Download 64-bit Linux Lubuntu ISO image for Mac. This image is adjusted to work properly on Mac systems:
    64-bit Mac (AMD64) desktop CD
  2. Download and install Parallels Desktop for Mac. There’s a 14 days free trial:

Create a new virtual machine in Parallels

  1. Install Parallels Desktop on your Mac
  2. Open Parallels Desktop
  3. Install a Linux Lubuntu Virtual Machine
    1. File >> New… >> Continue
    2. Choose “Image File”
    3. Drag the Lubuntu ISO image into dotted box
    4. Continue
    5. Select as operating system: More Linux >> Debian GNU/Linux
    6. ok
    7. Name: Lubuntu 13.04 for Mac
    8. Continue
  4. After that, you’ll see the first screen Lubuntu configuration. Answer the questions according to your needs.
  5. Wait for Lubuntu installation. Click restart button when asked.
  6. Force quit, if you’re facing a frozen screen, by clicking “Shut down” Parallels command.
  7. If everything went well, by this point, you have a virtual machine named “Lubuntu 13.04 for Mac”

Install Virtual Machine Software Tools

  • Most of the cases virtual machines allow tools to install.
  • In our case isn’t different. Let’s install Parallels virtual machine tools.
  1. In Parallels Desktop, click to start your new “Lubuntu 13.04 for Mac” virtual machine.
  2. if asked, answer your username and password
  3. If asked, answer NO to update Lubuntu.
  4. Execute the following commands:
    1. In Parallels Desktop menu, click: Virtual Machine >> Install Parallels Tools… >> Continue
    2. To install Parallels Tools, open a terminal (LXTerminal): Control+Option+T
    3. Go to the CD/DVD drive directory: cd /media/your-user-name/Parallels Tools
    4. Run the following command as root: “sudo ./install”.
    5. Press “next” button 3 times.
  5. Wait while downloading and installing are in progress.
  6. Press reboot button to restart your virtual machine.

Install Linux Lubuntu Updates

  • After installing Parallels tools, open LXTerminal and using the command line, install the lastest Lubuntu distribution updates.
    1. sudo apt-get update && sudo apt-get upgrade && sudo apt-get dist-upgrade
    2. This can take a while.

    3. sudo apt-get clean

Configure Lubuntu Virtual Machine

  • After updating to the lastest Lubuntu distribution, let’s configure an option.
  • Go to the Parallels Desktop menu:
    1. Virtual Machine >> Configure… >> Options >> Applications
    2. Share Linux Applications with Mac: uncheck

Configure Lubuntu

  • After that, we only need one more adjustment. In the Lubuntu desktop screen:
    1. Initial button >> Preferences >> Desktop Preferences:
    2. Change the background mode to: “Tile the image to fill the entire screen”

And that’s it! We have installed and configured a Linux Lubuntu virtual machine in Parallels Desktop for Mac.

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