Instant Ubuntu VMs

A mini-cloud on your Mac or Windows workstation.

Multipass provides a command line interface to launch, manage and generally fiddle about with instances of Linux. The downloading of a minty-fresh image takes a matter of seconds, and within minutes a VM can be up and running.

The Register
  • Ubuntu LTS on tap

    Launch instances of Ubuntu and initialize them with cloud-init metadata just like AWS, Azure, Google, IBM and Oracle clouds.

  • Up to date

    Automatically fetch and maintain the freshest Ubuntu image from Canonical. Never waste time on updates at launch.

  • Pet, and cattle

    Your ‘primary’ instance gets special treatment with integration to your native filesystem and dedicated hot-key access.

  • Native hypervisor

    Hyper-V, HyperKit, Virtualbox and KVM are all natively used for the fastest startup time.

  • Optimised guests

    Custom tuned Ubuntu kernel is used for each hypervisor for the best I/O and performance.

  • Platform integration

    Share files and folders between your normal home directory and your instances.

Install Multipass


Getting started

Your first five minutes with Multipass should give you a sense of how much fun it is to have a lightweight cloud handy, free of charge, on your workstation. Let’s launch a few LTS instances, list them, exec a command or script inside the instance, use cloud-init and clean up old instances.

Launch an instance (by default you get the current Ubuntu LTS)

Run commands in that instance, try running bash (logout or ctrl-d to quit)

Pass a cloud-init metadata file to an instance on launch see using cloud-init with multipass for more details

See your instances

Stop and start instances

Clean up what you don’t need

Find alternate images to launch with multipass

Get help

Now don’t forget you still have ‘foo’ running :)

Learn more