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Advice for Systems with Low RAM

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Defaults[edit]

  • Whonix ™ Xfce
    • Whonix-Gateway ™ Xfce - 1280 MB RAM and 128 MB VRAM.
    • Whonix-Workstation ™ Xfce - 2048 MB RAM and 128 MB VRAM
  • Whonix ™ CLI
    • Whonix-Gateway ™ CLI - 512 MB RAM and 16 MB VRAM.
    • Whonix-Workstation ™ CLI - 512 MB RAM and 16 MB VRAM

Advice for Systems with Low RAM[edit]

Whonix ™ with CLI (command line interface) is normally for advanced users only. However, unless the user wants to upgrade the system or change the configuration even Whonix ™ with Xfce graphical user interface users can reduce Whonix-Gateway ™ RAM and VRAM assignment. Whonix-Gateway ™ can work with as little as 256 MB RAM, but resource intensive operations like upgrades can leave the virtual machine in a frozen state. [1] Assigning less than 512 MB RAM to a Whonix ™ VM will result in RAM Adjusted Desktop Starter starting CLI but not Xfce. There are various options.

A) Whonix-Gateway ™ CLI RAM Saving Mode

The user just wants to run Whonix-Gateway ™ after its initial first boot setup or after upgrades:

  1. Shutdown Whonix-Gateway ™.
  2. Assign less RAM Whonix-Gateway ™: Virtual machineMenuSettingsAdjust Memory slider to 256Hit: OK
  3. Assign less VRAM to Whonix-Gateway ™: VirtualBoxclick a VMSettingsDisplayGraphics ControllerAdjust slider for Video Memory to 16OK
  4. Restart Whonix-Gateway ™.
  5. Start Whonix-Workstation ™.

Done, Whonix-Gateway ™ is now serving Whonix-Workstation ™ but operates with less RAM.

B) Whonix-Gateway ™ Graphical Administration Mode

The user wants to upgrade Whonix ™ or change Tor settings:

  1. Shut down all VMs.
  2. Assign default RAM to Whonix-Gateway ™. (Increase Virtual Machine RAM)
  3. Assign default VRAM to Whonix-Gateway ™.
  4. Start Whonix-Gateway ™.
  5. The user will now have access to a graphical Whonix-Gateway ™ with Xfce.
  6. Perform administrative tasks such as upgrades and/or change Tor settings.
  7. Shutdown Whonix-Gateway ™.
  8. Apply RAM Saving Mode as described above.

Done, the user upgraded or changed settings using a graphical Whonix-Gateway ™ with Xfce.

C) Whonix-Workstation ™ CLI RAM Saving Mode

Whonix-Workstation ™ CLI (when not using the Xfce desktop environment) can be run with with as little as 256 MB RAM, but resource intensive operations like upgrades can leave the virtual machine in a frozen state. [1] Assign more RAM during upgrades. 450 MB RAM should be more than enough.

D) Whonix-Workstation ™ Xfce RAM Saving Mode

Whonix-Workstation ™ Xfce can be run with with as little as 512 MB RAM, but resource intensive operations like upgrades can leave the virtual machine in a frozen state. [1] Assign more RAM during upgrades. 1280 MB RAM should be more than enough. Some applications, especially browsers (Tor Browser, more so when using too many open browser tabs at the same time) might have reduced performance or the VM might freeze due to low RAM.

Alternatively:

  • Whonix-Gateway ™ Xfce RAM Saving Mode: Whonix-Gateway ™ Xfce can run with as little as 512 MB RAM, but resource intensive operations like upgrades can leave the virtual machine in a frozen state. [1] For upgrading, increase as described above for Whonix-Gateway ™ Graphical Administration Mode.
  • Whonix ™ with CLI: Advanced users comfortable with Whonix ™ with CLI could of course also permanently use Whonix ™ with CLI.
  • Experiments: Experimentation with RAM lower than 256 MB is up to the user; please share your results.

See also Troubleshooting, Low RAM Issues.

See Also[edit]

Footnotes[edit]

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 Such as kernel package upgrades that rebuild the initrd.


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