Unable to create KVM virtual machine: Host does not support domain type kvm for virtualization type hvm

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Published on April 25th 2020 - Listed in Linux KVM Hardware Virtualization


On a Debian Stretch (9) test machine, the creation of a KVM virtual machine was throwing the following error:

root@stretch ~ # virt-install --connect qemu:///system --virt-type kvm --hvm -n kvmtest --memory 4096 --vcpus 2 --cdrom /tmp/ubuntu1804.iso --disk /dev/vglxc/kvmtest --network=bridge:virbr0 --graphics vnc,password=foobar,port=5910 --noautoconsole
ERROR    Host does not support domain type kvm for virtualization type 'hvm' arch 'x86_64'

A quick check, if the kvm Kernel module was loaded, showed:

root@stretch ~ # lsmod | grep kvm
kvm                   745472  0
irqbypass              16384  1 kvm

This should show an additional loaded module "kvm_intel" for Intel CPUs or "kvm_amd" for AMD CPUs.
However manual loading of module kvm_amd (this system runs with a AMD Ryzen 1700 processor) did not work:

root@stretch ~ # modprobe kvm_amd
modprobe: ERROR: could not insert 'kvm_amd': Operation not supported

A japanese blog article mentions that virtualization was not enabled in BIOS. dmesg seems to confirm this:

root@stretch ~ # dmesg|grep kvm | tail
[75819.537075] kvm: disabled by bios
[75819.633562] kvm: disabled by bios
[75819.715582] kvm: disabled by bios
[75819.799348] kvm: disabled by bios
[75819.899220] kvm: disabled by bios
[79422.810202] kvm: no hardware support
[79853.617887] kvm: disabled by bios
[80176.188187] kvm: disabled by bios
[80228.848450] kvm: disabled by bios
[80262.517445] kvm: disabled by bios

Verified in BIOS and "SVM Mode" was indeed disabled:

Enable AMD CPU Virtualization SMV in BIOS

After enabling it and booting into Debian again, lsmod finally showed the needed module:

root@stretch ~ # lsmod | grep kvm
kvm_amd               106496  0
kvm                   745472  1 kvm_amd
ccp                    98304  7 kvm_amd
irqbypass              16384  1 kvm

And the creation of the KVM virtual machine finally worked:

root@stretch ~ # virt-install --connect qemu:///system --virt-type kvm -n kvmtest --memory 4096 --vcpus 2 --cdrom /tmp/ubuntu1804.iso --disk /dev/vglxc/kvmtest --network=bridge:virbr0 --graphics vnc,password=foobar,port=5910 --noautoconsole
WARNING  No operating system detected, VM performance may suffer. Specify an OS with --os-variant for optimal results.

Starting install...



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