QEMU Guest Agent


qemu-ga [OPTIONS]


The QEMU Guest Agent is a daemon intended to be run within virtual machines. It allows the hypervisor host to perform various operations in the guest, such as:

  • get information from the guest
  • set the guest’s system time
  • read/write a file
  • sync and freeze the filesystems
  • suspend the guest
  • reconfigure guest local processors
  • set user’s password

qemu-ga will read a system configuration file on startup (located at /etc/qemu/qemu-ga.conf by default), then parse remaining configuration options on the command line. For the same key, the last option wins, but the lists accumulate (see below for configuration file format).


-m, --method=METHOD

Transport method: one of unix-listen, virtio-serial, or isa-serial, or vsock-listen (virtio-serial is the default).

-p, --path=PATH

Device/socket path (the default for virtio-serial is /dev/virtio-ports/org.qemu.guest_agent.0, the default for isa-serial is /dev/ttyS0). Socket addresses for vsock-listen are written as <cid>:<port>.

-l, --logfile=PATH

Set log file path (default is stderr).

-f, --pidfile=PATH

Specify pid file (default is /var/run/qemu-ga.pid).

-F, --fsfreeze-hook=PATH

Enable fsfreeze hook. Accepts an optional argument that specifies script to run on freeze/thaw. Script will be called with ‘freeze’/’thaw’ arguments accordingly (default is /etc/qemu/fsfreeze-hook). If using -F with an argument, do not follow -F with a space (for example: -F/var/run/fsfreezehook.sh).

-t, --statedir=PATH

Specify the directory to store state information (absolute paths only, default is /var/run).

-v, --verbose

Log extra debugging information.

-V, --version

Print version information and exit.

-d, --daemon

Daemonize after startup (detach from terminal).

-b, --block-rpcs=LIST

Comma-separated list of RPCs to disable (no spaces, use help to list available RPCs).

-a, --allow-rpcs=LIST

Comma-separated list of RPCs to enable (no spaces, use help to list available RPCs).

-D, --dump-conf

Dump the configuration in a format compatible with qemu-ga.conf and exit.

-h, --help

Display this help and exit.


The syntax of the qemu-ga.conf configuration file follows the Desktop Entry Specification, here is a quick summary: it consists of groups of key-value pairs, interspersed with comments.

# qemu-ga configuration sample
daemonize = 0
pidfile = /var/run/qemu-ga.pid
verbose = 0
method = virtio-serial
path = /dev/virtio-ports/org.qemu.guest_agent.0
statedir = /var/run

The list of keys follows the command line options:

Key Key type
daemon boolean
method string
path string
logfile string
pidfile string
fsfreeze-hook string
statedir string
verbose boolean
block-rpcs string list

See also