In addition to Conda, [environment modules](https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Environment_Modules_(software)) provide users with a convenient approach to switching software environments on Linux machines. This approach is widely used on computer clusters that offer computational services to a large number of users, and the environment modules are shared by authorised users. These modules, however, are not Linux kernel modules, which are automatically launched by the OS at start-up, and they should be manually loaded to the OS by users. I learnt how to use module commands for bioinformatic analysis when I was studying at the University of Melbourne. Loading a module essentially modifies your environmental variable `$PATH`. In this post, I set up a module manager for users of my Xubuntu system.
Linux is a popular family of operating systems (OS) used in bioinformatics. Amongst its numerous distributions, Xubuntu is a lightweight derivative of ubuntu Linux, and aims to run on a machine with low system requirements. As a Windows user, I often need to switch to a Linux environment for program development and test. To this end, VirtualBox offers an easy-to-use but low-in-resources alternative to a dedicated physical machine or disc space (dual OS). This post records my key steps for setting up Xubuntu in VirtualBox for basic bioinformatic work.