CollabVM Server 2.0/Getting Started

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This page will help you get started with CollabVM Server v2.0. CollabVM Server v2.0 is very different from CollabVM Server v1.x.



Starting the server[edit]


A new feature in CollabVM Server 2.0 is the addition of arguments. While CollabVM Server 1.2 had these, it had a very limited set of arguments. This section will document them.

--help, --h

This will display a help dialog, listing available commands.

--version, --v

This will display the current version of your CollabVM Server, as well as its associated libraries.

--host, --h

(default: --host localhost)
Specify the IP address you wish to host CollabVM Server on.

--port, --p

(default: --p=80)
Specify the port which CollabVM Server will run on. CollabVM Server can run on any port. The default is 80, although you may wish to use another one as port 80 is typically taken up by Apache2/nginx servers, and it also requires root access to use (on Linux).

--root, --r

(default: --r .)
This is the directory that CollabVM Server will serve files from, like the Admin Panel. If you would like to change the default root directory, specify the folder with the --r command (e.g. --r=files)

--cert, --c

If you would like CollabVM, as well as account registrations and logins to be secured with SSL, you can specify the location of an .PEM SSL certificate with this command. It is not recommended to have public account registrations with SSL disabled.

--no-autostart, --n

If you do not want any virtual machines to be automatically started with the CollabVM Server (even if they have been specified to autostart with the Admin Panel), you can include this command.

--threads, --t

Specify the amount of threads that CollabVM Server can use.

Creating an account[edit]

If you are hosting your CollabVM on your own server (and not just hosting a UserVM), you will need to create an account to perform administrator tasks. By default, the first user created on CollabVM is an administrator account.


Firewall Exception[edit]

On Windows operating systems, you may need to add an exception in Windows Firewall in order to actually allow users to connect to your VM. The process is very simple.

Windows XP/Server 2003/POSReady 2009[edit]
  • Click on the Start Menu, and go to Control Panel. Switch to Classic View if you have "Category View" enabled.
  • Open Windows Firewall.
  • Click on the "Exceptions" tab.
  • Click on "Add Program..."
  • Click "Browse", and locate collab-vm-server.exe.
  • Click OK.
  • Make sure it is checked, then click OK.
Windows Vista/Server 2008[edit]
  • Click on the Windows logo (Start Menu), and go to Control Panel. Under the regular view, click on "Allow a program through Windows Firewall". On Classic View, click Windows Firewall.
  • Click on the "Exceptions" tab.
  • Click on "Add Program..."
  • Click "Browse", and locate collab-vm-server.exe.
  • Click OK.
  • Make sure it is checked, then click OK.
Windows 7/Server 2008 R2[edit]
This applies to the Professional/Ultimate/Enterprise editions of Windows 7.
  • Click on the Windows logo (Start Menu), and do a search for "Windows Firewall with Advanced Security".
  • Click on the first result.
  • Click on Outbound Rules.
  • On the menu bar, click on "Action", then "New Rule..."
  • On the "Rule Type" menu, make sure "Program" is ticked, then click Next.
  • Click on Browse, then locate collab-vm-server.exe. Alternatively, you can also put the full path in the text box if you know where it is. Click Next afterwards.
  • Make sure that "Allow the connection" is ticked, then click Next.
  • On the "When does this rule apply" tab, make sure that everything except "Public" is ticked (unless you want to host this on a public network), then hit Next.
  • Set the name to "CollabVM Server", and write a description if you want. Click on Finish.
  • Repeat the same instructions above for Inbound Rules as well.
Windows 7 Home Premium/Starter/Thin PC/etc[edit]
  • Click on "System and Security", or "Windows Firewall" if you aren't on the Category view.
  • Click on "Allow a program through Windows Firewall".
  • Click on "Change Settings".
  • Click on "Allow another program...".
  • Click on "Browse", and locate the collab-vm-server.exe.
  • Make sure that "Home/Network (Private)" is checked. If you are running on a Public network, make sure "Public" is checked as well.
  • Click OK.
Windows 8, 8.1, Server 2012 & Server 2012 R2[edit]
  • Ditto for above section
Windows 10/Server 2016[edit]
  • Ditto for above section

Enabling QEMU hardware acceleration[edit]

If you are using QEMU to host, you will need to enable hardware acceleration for optimal speeds.

  • Enable Virtualization in your BIOS if it is disabled. As these instructions will vary between computers, please refer to your hardware manufacturer's instructions for booting into the BIOS and enabling virtualization technology. If you do not have physical access to your server, contact your server host for assistance.


Windows needs a special driver installed to properly utilize QEMU hardware acceleration. Note that if you choose to host QEMU, VirtualBox or VMWare VMs, you will not be able to host Hyper-V VMs, because Hyper-V needs to be disabled in order to use VT-x.

This driver only works on Windows 7 and up and does not work on Windows XP/Vista or older. This driver cannot be installed on computers using AMD CPUs.

  • Grab the Intel HAXM installer from here. Note that even though it says "Android", it will work on Windows. Proceed through the installation.
  • Install QEMU for Windows from here.
  • Acceleration requires Administrator privileges, so run a command prompt as admin and go to the QEMU directory (usually C:\Program Files\qemu)
  • Enter the QEMU command, and add -accel hax at the end. You can do a quick test run with this command to make sure it works: qemu-system-x86_64 -m 64 -accel hax (Note: If it doesn't work, you may have to restart your computer.)