Newcomer questions

Hello Qubes community!

I’ve discovered this project recently and consider that it something that I was trying to achieve myself using KVM and separate VM for each my “activity”.
I’ve installed Qubes on spare laptop and would like to ask several questions, if I may.

  1. Hibernation. I often use hibernation when I need to be afk for 15+ minutes. That is very handy as I am able to “save” state of my running VMs and programs/documents/web-pages opened in those VMs. Also after hibernation I need to enter passphrase in order to resume my work and before that all data on drive is encrypted.
    After reading a bit I understand that Qubes does not support hibernation, only suspend to RAM. So, if I would like to have my data encrypted, when I am not at my computer for some time, I need to shut the system down. Is it correct? Or may be there is another way that I am missing.

  2. “Removable pools”. Currently I have several external drives that hold data. With my current setup I do not need have them plugged in all the time (and I do not have free ports to attach them all), I only attach drive when I boot up VM which data is stored there.
    I do see that there is a “secondary storage” article that explains how to use another drive as a storage for qubes. On my test computer I was able to add it, create qube that use it for storing its data there. So far so good.
    I was able to remove this pool, but only after I removed cube that was using it. Is there a possibility to remove that pool without removing cube? If I am not planning to run qube that use that pool and work with data stored there, I want to detach that extrenal drive holding pool. And I would like not delete/create qube each time I need to work with data/remove external drive.
    Or, perhaps, I am not using right tool for this and there is another way to achieve my goal of removable storage?
    One thing that is come to my mind is simply mount external storage in running cube. I.e. qube is using laptop internal drive, but data is mounted in qube from external drive. However I would like to get persistent storage of that cube on removable media. Analogy of my current setup is that I have my VM definition on laptop, but storage located on external disk.

  3. Ability to add more internal drives to pool. If in future I would like to add additional internal drive. Will it be possible to increase existing VM storage pool to use it. I’ve read that it is possible with LVM, but wanted to double check if there are additional consideration for Qubes.

  4. Sound glitches. This is more like inconvenience and not critical, but perhaps someone might point me to right direction. I’m using Lenovo Thinkpad P15 + kernel-latest (6.0), sound in general working fine however after 1-2 minutes of music playing some sort of noises appears, tempo like slowing. Interesting part that it is “fixed” if I open volume control. Sound becomes good. If I close volume control I might get those glitches back. With opened volume control there are no glitches. This is also true with kernel 5.15.5x (and on 5.15.8x I do not have sound).

Thank you for comments and answers.

1 Like

Hi @ditonix, welcome to the Community! I’m glad you decided to use Qubes OS.

The corresponding issue: Simulate Hibernation / Suspend-To-Disk · Issue #2414 · QubesOS/qubes-issues · GitHub

Yes: encrypt on suspend · Issue #2890 · QubesOS/qubes-issues · GitHub

Unresolved discussion: Is moving qubes to an external drive possible?
Another relevant discussion: Storage pool on an encrypted external drive?

You should create separate topics for your separate questions, otherwise it gets very hard for other newcomers to find the solutions.

Also, you’re more likely to receive good responses if your thread title is something specific and answerable. I usually skip threads with titles that are too generic.

1 Like

Don’t run qvm-pool remove for this. “Removing” a Qubes OS storage pool is for when you want the system to forget it because you intend to never use it again.

When you want to merely detach the medium, you don’t have to do anything Qubes OS specific. Just whatever is necessary for the underlying storage stack: If what you’ve created on your external drive is an lvm_thin pool, deactivate the LVM volume group it’s on with lvchange --activate n <volume group>. (Or if it is a file-reflink pool, unmount the Btrfs/XFS filesystem it’s on.) Then cryptsetup close the encryption layer. Then spin down the drive (assuming it’s not an SSD), e.g. with hdparm -y from the hdparm package. Now it’s safe to physically detach it.

1 Like