This tutorial is based on installing Slackware 13 in VirtualBox although it will work on other Slackware previous versions and versions up to the latest Slackware 13.37.1. Open VirtualBox.

2. Select ‘New‘ then click ‘Next‘. You should then be at the VM Name and OS Type screen so type in your version of Slackware, (Slackware 13/13.1 etc) in the name, bring down the OS tab and click Linux then the version tab and enter Linux 2.6.

3. It’ll set the memory at 256MB but if you have enough spare RAM double it to 512MB.

4. Virtual Hard Disk. Set this to dynamically use your current partition so you don’t have to re-partition your hard drive and lose space. Check ‘Boot Hard Disk (Primary Master)‘ and select ‘Create new hard disk‘.

5. Click ‘Next‘ until you see Hard Disk Storage Type at the top and select ‘Dynamically expanding storage‘.


6. Virtual Disk Location and Size. You can set Location and Size to whatever you want, just make sure you don’t put more size than your hard drive has total (minimum 5.00GB).
7. Select Finish. On Summary select Finish again.
8. Right click on the newly created Slackware and select “Settings”
9. Click on Storage on the left and under IDE Controller, select the Empty disc and open the Virtual Media Manager on the right.
10. Add the Slackware ISO, (please tell me you’ve downloaded it!).
11. Select OK.
12. Select “Slackware” from the left and click “Start”
13. From the text in the screenshot below, it’s asking if we want to install with extra parameters. In this case we don’t, so simply hit <ENTER> without typing anything.

14. Assuming your using a United States keyboard (standard Qwerty stuff), just hit <ENTER> again without typing anything.

15. Now time to setup root account and partition.
– slackware login: root
– root@slackware:/# cfdisk /dev/hda


16. To create the partition, arrow over to [ New ] press <ENTER>.
– Select [ Primary ]. Press <ENTER>.
– Size (in MB): should be what we set in VirtualBox setup (in our case 8589.90). Press <ENTER>
You should now have one item in the list. Refer to screenshot below for reference.


17. Select [ Bootable ]. Press <ENTER>
– Select [ Write ]. Press <ENTER>
– Type yes. Press <ENTER>


18. Select [ Quit ]. Press <ENTER>

19. Now time to run setup. Where it says root@slackware:/# (at the bottom) Type setup


20. Arrow down to TARGET. Press <ENTER>


21. Make sure /dev/hda1 (or whatever partition you setup is selected and press <ENTER>


22. Select Format. Press <ENTER>


23. Select ext4. Press <ENTER>


24. When its done it should look like the following: Verify then press <ENTER>


25. Select option 1 “Install from a Slackware CD or DVD” (This is where its going to use the ISO you downloaded earlier). Press <ENTER>


26. Select auto “Scan for the CD or DVD drive (recommended).” Press <ENTER>


27. Leave everything on the screen below unchanged and just press <ENTER>


28. Select full “Install everything (4.8+ GB of software, RECOMMENDED!)” Press <ENTER>

Now we have anything up to around half an hour depending on your hardware while Slackware installs, so kick back and………


29. We want to skip making a USB boot stick as it won’t be needed. Select Skip and press <ENTER>

30. Yes, we DEFINATELY want to install LILO. Select simple “Try to install LILO automatically” and press <ENTER>

31. For the next part its really up to you, I just chose the default setting. Select 1024x768x256 and press <ENTER>

32. We don’t need to append anything to LILO, so for the next screen just press <ENTER> without typing anything.

33. Next screen is pretty standard. You want to select < No > to select the older non UTF text console. Press <ENTER>

34. Best bet is to install to the Master Boot Record. Select MBR “Install to Master Boot Record” and press <ENTER>

35. Next setting is for your mouse. This will default to whatever mouse is connected to your computer. Mine is imps2 Yours may be different. If you are unsure, it is safer to select whatever is highlighted by default. Press <ENTER>

36. Your decision to install gpm, it is designed to make your virtual experience easier. I’m all for that. I’m selecting < Yes >. Press <ENTER>

37. Next screen is simple, do you want internet access on your Slackware VirtualBox? If yes Select < Yes >
– hostname: YOURNAME
– domain name: bnetweb.org (Any domain works, no www. or leading .)
– IP Select: If you are using cable/dsl its safest to select DHCP if you are unsure of your IP configuration. (This setup can always be re-run at a later time.)
– My network provider doesn’t require a DHCP hostname, so I leave it blank. Press <ENTER>
Your Network Summary may resemble (but doesn’t need to be exact) the following:

38. Next step you select your startup services. Make it easy on yourself and just accept the defaults, or feel free to do research on only the most necessary ones. Press <ENTER>

39. Feel free to try some fonts you may like on the next screen. For the sake of this tutorial I’m going to skip it. Select < No > and press <ENTER>

40. Next screen is your system clock. If you want your local time select NO or UTC time select YES. I chose no.

41. Next screen pick the timezone your in (only if you selected no on the previous screen). I chose US/Eastern. Press <ENTER>

42. Next screen is the Window Manager. Big decision. The best in my opinion is xinitrc.xfce ” The Cholesterol Free Desktop Environment”. I suggest picking that one. Press <ENTER>

43. Of course you want a password for root. Select < Yes > and press <ENTER>

44. Do what the console says. Press [enter] to continue. Press <ENTER>

45. Congrats! Slackware is installed! Press <ENTER> to exit setup.

46. Arrow down to EXIT and press <ENTER>

47. Now we need to turn off the Virtual machine. So cliick Machine -> Close… -> Power off the virtual machine from VirtualBox’s top menu bar.

48. Right click your Slackware OS from the left and go to Settings (again).

49. Click on Storage on the left and the disc should be labeled “slackware-13.0-install-dvd.iso” Select it and change the CD/DVD Device: to Empty. Press OK

50. Select your Slackware on the left side of VirtualBox and press Start.

51. The splash screen should look as follows. Click on the splash and press <ENTER>.

52. Wait for the startup scripts to finish loading (may take a minute) Scroll to the bottom and enter your username “root” then the password you setup and Press <ENTER>

53. Once your username and password are entered. Type “startx” in the screen and press <ENTER> to load Slackware.

Installing ‘Guest Additions’ is very easy, just follow the following steps.

1) Select Devices -> Install Guest Additions… from VirtualBox menu.

2) Click “Allow Auto-Run”

3) Double Click VBOXADDITIONS-3.1.2_56127 on your Desktop, then from the folder view, Double click VBoxLinuxAdditions-x86.run

4) A white box will appear saying its installing VirtualBox Guest Additions. Wait for it to finish and close by pressing <ENTER>.

5) Click the ‘xfce’ symbol in the bottom left corner and Select Log Out.

6) Click on Restart.

7) Repeat steps 52-56 from above (or just login if you remember how) and load up Slackware.

…….and that’s it, enjoy Slackware. There’s is a saying ‘Use Debian, learn Debian. Use Slackware, learn Linux’ and I think it’s pretty much true. When I was a total n00b I spent a while using Ubuntu to get the basics of Linux command line then through myself into Slackware and came out the other end knowing a shit load more than I would’ve learnt sticking with Ubuntu, Mint or suchlike. Don’t get me wrong, they’re great operating systems and will always hands down beat Windoze everytime but if you really wanna learn Linux give Slackware a spin. What have you got to lose? You can always install something else if you can’t handle it yet, that the beauty of Linux and the whole free software ethos.

p.s Another good learning system for ‘Unix like’ is BSD. I use OpenBSD out of all the BSD distros but PCBSD or FreeBSD are good starting points.