Research Virtual Machines (VMs)

The Research Virtual Machine service provides researchers with Linux virtual machines.


Virtual machines with Ubuntu 20.04 LTS are pre-configured to use University IT accounts for authentication. Other distributions may be available if there is a genuine reason why Ubuntu cannot be used.


University academic and research staff are eligible to use this service.

Service Level Agreement (SLA)

We aim to respond to service requests within one working day and to resolve standard queries and requests within 5 working days. However, because of the wide variety of requests we receive related to this service, in some cases resolution may take much longer. If this is the case you will be notified via the ticketing system; you will also receive regular updates until your request is resolved.


This service is available 24/7. Availability is estimated at 99%.

Support hours

9am – 5pm, Monday to Friday.

How to request/access

Use the online request form on the Research Virtual Machine service page: