Linux Ubuntu HD Wallpapers

In this new post, I like to explain how to configure RStudio in Azure with an Ubuntu virtual machine. In the last few months, I worked a lot on R, RStudio and the integration with Azure. I have created those posts:

Also, I worked on the integration between R/Plumber, the library for creating API with R, and Azure using the API Management Service

In Azure I have a very expensive virtual machine with Ubuntu 20.04 because I need a power machine for long and complex calculation. I shutdown the machine when I finish my stuff. When I restart the machine, I have to open again the connection with the Azure Container Repository (ACR). Then, restart the Docker container with RStudio.

So, I don’t want to do everything manually and I started to try to run automatically all the command at the startup. I tried and I found difficult to configure services in Ubuntu, mostly because Ubuntu removed some commands.

After few days, I found the way and I want to share it with you. From the beginning…

Configure the Virtual Machine (VM)

As I said, I created a virtual machine in Azure with Ubuntu 20.04. I don’t explain how to create a virtual machine in this post. If you need help, see this post. So, the machine is ready and I have access to it via SSH.

So, the first thing I want to set up is:

  • Docker
  • RDP (Remote Desktop Protocol) to connect to the virtual machine
  • Connection with Azure Container Registry
  • Start RStudio

For that, I prepare a Bash script to run. To create a script to execute, you can follow these steps. There is a simple editor and its name is Nano. It is easy to use and it is already installed. First, open a SSH connection with the virtual machine. Then, I’m going to create the file first.sh typing this command

nano first.sh

In this file I added all the command I need to set up all the above applications. This is the script:

sudo apt-get update
sudo apt install docker.io
sudo systemctl start docker
sudo systemctl enable docker
sudo apt-get -y install xfce4
sudo apt-get -y install xrdp
sudo systemctl enable xrdp
echo xfce4-session >~/.xsession
sudo service xrdp restart
sudo docker login youracr.azurecr.io --username yourusername --password yourpassword
sudo docker run -d -p 8787:8787 -e USER=rstudio -e PASSWORD=mypassword youracr.azurecr.io/rstudio

So, you end up to have a screen like the following image.

Nano editor via SSH in Ubuntu - Configure RStudio in Azure with Ubuntu
Nano editor via SSH in Ubuntu

Now, you have to tell Ubuntu that this file is executable. For that, you have to run this command:

chmod +x first.sh

Now, you run the script with this command

./first.sh

Another option is as follows to execute shell script with one of the following commands:

sh script-name-here.sh
bash script-name-here.sh

Now, the virtual machine is ready. If I restart the machine, Docker doesn’t start. So, next step is to configure a service that start at the startup to execute Docker.

Configure a service at the startup with Ubuntu 20.04

So, when I started, I didn’t know that Ubuntu removed chkconfig to configure a new service or that it requires file with LBS information. I won’t tell you all the story but basically, for every Ubuntu there is some different configuration to apply. The solution with Ubuntu 20.04 is pretty straightforward: I can add the command in /etc/rc.local

So, move to the etc folder and with nano editor open the file rc.local (probably using sudo)

sudo nano /etc/rc.local

This executes the commands as root. To execute commands as a specific user, use sudo -i -u (-i to also run the login shell). For example, to establish a persistent SSH tunnel, where myhost is definde in johndoe~/.ssh/config file:

sudo -i -u johndoe autossh -nNT -L 1234:localhost:1234 myhost

Sometimes, the file rc.local didn’t exists. So, you have a blank file in nano. For that, you have to add at the beginning of the file the following code called Shebang line.

#!/bin/bash
Example of rc.local - Configure RStudio in Azure with Ubuntu
Example of rc.local

By Enrico

My greatest passion is technology. I am interested in multiple fields and I have a lot of experience in software design and development. I started professional development when I was 6 years. Today I am a strong full-stack .NET developer (C#, Xamarin, Azure)

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