Run Kata Containers on a Service VM

This tutorial describes how to install, configure, and run Kata Containers on the ACRN Service VM. In this configuration, Kata Containers leverage the ACRN hypervisor instead of QEMU which is used by default. Refer to the Kata Containers with ACRN presentation from a previous ACRN Project Technical Community Meeting for more details on Kata Containers and how the integration with ACRN has been done.


  1. Refer to the ACRN supported hardware.

  2. For a default prebuilt ACRN binary in the E2E package, you must have 4 CPU cores or enable “CPU Hyper-Threading” in order to have 4 CPU threads for 2 CPU cores.

  3. Follow these instructions to set up the ACRN Service VM.

  4. Build the ACRN kernel (required to support macvtap, enabled by default since 247a3ba9243b).

    $ git clone
    $ cd acrn-kernel
    $ cp kernel_config_sos .config
    $ make clean && make olddefconfig && make && make modules_install INSTALL_MOD_PATH=out/

    Log in to the Service VM and use the new ACRN kernel:

    $ sudo mount /dev/sda1 /mnt
    $ sudo scp -r <user name>@<host address>:<your workspace>/acrn-kernel/arch/x86/boot/bzImage /mnt/
    $ sudo scp -r <user name>@<host address>:<your workspace>/acrn-kernel/out/lib/modules/* /lib/modules/
    $ conf_file=`sed -n '$ s/default //p' /mnt/loader/loader.conf`.conf
    $ kernel_img=`sed -n 2p /mnt/loader/entries/$conf_file | cut -d'/' -f4`
    $ sed -i "s/$kernel_img/bzImage/g" /mnt/loader/entries/$conf_file
    $ sync && sudo umount /mnt && reboot


Adjust the EFI System Partition (ESP) device node (/dev/sda1 in the example above) to match your system setup.

Configure Kata on ACRN

Follow these kata instructions to configure and launch the Kata VMs with ACRN.