Hello all. I’ve been using KVM for a long time now. Every time i try to use virt-manager as a non-root user, i have to enter sudo password. This ain’t a problem but if you use virt-manager most of the times, it can be boring and irritating. I had written a nice tutorial for Arch users on: Complete Installation of KVM,QEMU and Virt Manager on Arch Linux and Manjaro

I’ll show you simple way to use virt-manager as a non-root user, by just creating libvirt group and adding standard user account to it. Without wasting much time, let’s dive in.

To use virt-manager as a non-root user, follow steps below:

1.Create unix group to use

If you’re new to user and group management, have a look at user management section in Top things to do after Fresh Installation of Fedora 23

First check if group already exist, if not create it

# getent group | grep libvirt

use virt-manager as a non-root user

# groupadd -g 7777 libvirt

2. Add user account to the libvirt group

# usermod -aG libvirt "username"

Verify that user is added to libvirt group.

# id  username | grep libvirt

use virt-manager as a non-root user

3. Edit libvirtd configuration file to add group

cat <<EOF >>/etc/libvirt/libvirtd.conf
unix_sock_group = "libvirt"
unix_sock_rw_perms = "0770"

Confirm settings

# tail -n  2 /etc/libvirt/libvirtd.conf

use virt-manager as a non-root user

4. Restart libvirtd daemon

systemctl restart libvirtd 
systemctl status  libvirtd

use virt-manager as a non-root user

6. Log out and login again to the system.

7. Launch virt-manager

$ virt-manager

Now try to launch virt-manager with your standard user account. You should be able to use virt-manager as a non-root user. If not, try to read your libvirtd.conf to see the relevant sections to modify.


We’ve covered how to use virt-manager as a non-root user in easy to follow steps. You may have to install KVM virtualization package group to get tools including virt-manager. Now virt-manager should run smoothly for you to create VMs and use virt-manager for vm management.

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I'm a fan of Linux and open source enthusiast with bachelor's degree in Electrical and Communications Engineering.The Swiss Army Knife syndrome makes me an expert in the fields of Virtualization, Cloud Computing,VoIP,Linux Containers and Server Hardening. Currently i have the following certifications: 1. LPI 2. SUSE Certified Linux Administrator ( CLA) 3. SUSE Certified Linux Professional ( CLP) 4. CCNA And working on RHCSA, RHCE, RHCVA, and Openstack Cloud Certification. I have a strong desire to learn, develop, and share knowledge with others.