Multipass- Ubuntu VMs Made Easy

In the server space, virtual machines have been a part of PC computing for nearly twenty years, and have become increasingly important in corporate IT environments and on the Internet to enable companies to deploy and scale services on demand quickly and easily.

A new application called Multipass, built by engineers at Canonical and other contributors, enables anyone on Windows, macOS, or Linux to deploy pre-tuned Ubuntu images as virtual machines using native hypervisors and other systems. The –cloud-init directive enables customization of instances on launch. Images are downloaded in real-time and always guaranteed up to date with the latest patches. By default multipass downloads the current LTS version of Ubuntu Server.

Install via snap:

$ sudo snap install multipass

Launching an instance is easy:

$ multipass launch --name www

Seeing the status of your instances:

$ multipass list

Stopping and starting:

$ multipass stop www
$ multipass start www

Delete outdated or unused instances:

$ multipass delete www
$ multipass purge

Find alternate versions or solution-specific appliances:

$ multipass find

Deploying an image in a few minutes has deonstrated to me that this is now the default way everyone should be deploying new Ubuntu virtual machines. Of course, there will always be edge cases where custom manul install of an Ubuntu instance is warranted, but the reduced effort and time savings achieved with multipass are remarkable.