How to install and set up LXD on Fedora Linux server

I set up a brand new Fedora Linux server in the cloud. How can I install and setup LXD on Fedora Linux? How do I create my first VM using LXD?

Linux container is an implementation of operating system-level virtualization for the Linux operating system. LXD is a system container manager. You get an experience similar to virtual machines but using Linux containers instead. You can run various Linux distros using LXD. This page shows how to set up, use LXD and create your first VM on Fedora Linux server. Finally, you will then learn how to route traffic to the container from the Internet.

Requirements to run LXD on Fedora Linux

  1. Fedora Linux server either running on bare metal or in the cloud. I tested with Fedora Linux version 30/31/32.
  2. Snapd installed and configured on Fedora

Let us see all steps to install and setup LXD on Fedora Linux server in details.

Step 1 – Install snapd

To install the snapd package type the following dnf command:
sudo dnf install snapd

How to install snapd on Fedora Linux

You must setup a symlink using the ln command, enter:
sudo ln -s /var/lib/snapd/snap /snap
snap version

Sample outputs:
series  16
fedora  32
kernel  5.7.11-200.fc32.x86_64

Step 2 – Install and setup LXD on Fedora Linux server

Type the following snap command:
## first restart snapd using the systemctl command ##
sudo systemctl restart snapd.service
sudo snap install lxd

Verify LXD installation

Make sure lxd service enabled on the Fedora Linux:
$ sudo snap enable lxd
$ sudo snap services lxd

Service     Startup  Current
lxd.daemon  enabled  active

If not active, startit:
sudo snap start lxd

Add a Linux user named ‘vivek’ to lxd group

Type the following usermod command (feel free to replace the username ‘vivek‘ with your actual username on Fedora Linux):
sudo usermod -a -G lxd vivek
id vivek
newgrp lxd

At this stage log out and log in again if session not activated

Step 3 – Configure the LXD networking and storage for VM

Type the following command:
lxd init

I suggest you use new backends such as ZFS, BTRFS, or LVM and along with DHCP based IP networking for ease of setup for each VM. As a result, you can use snapshots and other advanced features supported by new backends. You may get warning as follows:

WARNING: cgroup v2 is not fully supported yet, proceeding with partial confinement

Currenlty support for cgroups v2 is in development, but has not been rolled out. Hence, you need to ignore this warning on Fedora Linux 32.

lxd verification

Make sure the lxc client is talking to the LXD daemon:
lxc list

List all available Linux LXD (Linux Containers) VM images

lxc image list images:

(click to enlarge)

Most of the images are known by several aliases. To see a list, enter:
lxc image alias list images:
lxc image alias list images: | grep -i arch
lxc image alias list images: | grep -i debian
lxc image alias list images: | grep -i fedora

Step 4. Create your first LXD VM on Fedora

It is time to create and use your first container. To create and start containers from images use the launch command:
lxc launch images:{distro}/{version}/{arch} {container-name-here}
Let us see some examples to create and start containers from various Linux distro images as per your needs.

CentOS Linux 7 and 8 container

lxc launch images:centos/7/amd64 cenots-7-vm
lxc launch images:centos/8/amd64 cenots-8-vm

Fedora Linux 33 container

lxc launch images:fedora/33/amd64 fedora-33

OpenSUSE Linux 15.2 continer

lxc launch images:opensuse/15.2/amd64 opensuse-15-2

Gentoo Linux container

lxc launch images:gentoo/amd64 gentoo-linux-vm

Arch Linux

lxc launch images:archlinux/amd64 arch-linux-vm

Ubuntu Linux LTS 18.04

lxc launch images:ubuntu/18.10/amd64 ubuntu-nginx-vm

Debian Linux 9.x

lxc launch images:debian/9/amd64 debian-nfs-server-vm

Debian Linux 10.x

lxc launch images:debian/10/amd64 debian-10-vm
lxc list

Sample outputs:

|     NAME     |  STATE  |        IPV4         |                     IPV6                     |    TYPE    | SNAPSHOTS |
| debian-10-vm | RUNNING | (eth0) | fd42:400:b94d:ad98:216:3eff:fe7e:1ec5 (eth0) | PERSISTENT |           |

How to list all my containers/VMs

List the existing containers:
lxc list --fast
lxc list | grep RUNNING
lxc list | grep STOPPED

How to execute/run the specified command in a container VM

lxc exec containerName -- command
lxc exec containerName -- /path/to/script
lxc exec containerName --env EDITOR=/usr/bin/vim -- command
### run date, ip a, ip rm and other commands on various containers ###
lxc exec cenots-7-vm -- date
lxc exec ubuntu-nginx-vm -- ip r
lxc exec fedora-33 -- dnf update
lxc exec debian-nfs-server-vm -- cat /etc/debian_version

How to login to my containers/VMs

To gain login and gain shell access in a container named debian-nfs-server-vm , enter:
lxc exec debian-nfs-server-vm bash
Now you can run commands or install packages for the VM:
# cat /etc/*issue*
# apt-get update
# apt-get upgrade
# apt-get install nginx

To exit simply from container simply type exit:
# exit
Sample session:

How to start/stop/restart my containers

lxc start containerName # <--- start it
lxc stop containerName # <--- stop it
lxc restart containerName # <--- restart it
lxc stop ubuntu-nginx-vm
lxc start ubuntu-nginx-vm
lxc restart ubuntu-nginx-vm

How to delete my containers

lxc stop vmName && lxc delete vmName
lxc stop ubuntu-nginx-vm && lxc delete ubuntu-nginx-vm

Get info about running containers

lxc info
lxc info containerName
lxc info ubuntu-nginx-vm

Step 5 – Forward incoming connections to the Linux container VM

First install the nginx server inside ubuntu-nginx-vm:
lxc exec ubuntu-nginx-vm bash
apt update && apt upgrade && apt install nginx
systemctl enable nginx
systemctl status nginx
### update/create the default html file
cat /var/www/html/index.nginx-debian.html

Sample file:

<!DOCTYPE html>
 <title>Welcome to nginx running on LXD VM!</title>
 <h1><h1>Welcome to nginx running on LXD VM!</h1>

Finally logout from the LXD vm:
# logout
Find ubuntu-nginx-vm IP address:
lxc list ubuntu-nginx-vm
Sample outputs:

|      NAME       |  STATE  |        IPV4         | IPV6 |    TYPE    | SNAPSHOTS |
| ubuntu-nginx-vm | RUNNING | (eth0) |      | PERSISTENT | 0         |

You need to redirect/forward all incoming traffic on port 80 to Fedora Linux 28 public IP address say to LXD private IP address

Find the default firewalld zone

sudo firewall-cmd --get-default-zone

Open port 80 for FedoraServer zone

sudo firewall-cmd --zone=FedoraServer --add-service=http --permanent

Forward port 80 to the LXD server port 80

sudo firewall-cmd --permanent --zone=FedoraServer --add-forward-port=port=80:proto=tcp:toport=80:toaddr=

Reload the fireall

sudo firewall-cmd --reload

Test it

Fire the web browser and type url:

For more info see FirewallD docs here and LXD info here.


You just set up an LXD container running on Fedora Linux. Once the container is up and running, you could install additional services such as Nginx, MariaDB, PHP, Python and more. See LXD page for more info.

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1 comment… add one
  • Docker fan boi Nov 30, 2020 @ 22:37

    Very nice but why not use Docker?

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