Oracle Virtual Box is one of the most well known Virtualization applications. It lets you run operating systems virtually on your base system (known as host operating system). You create virtual machines on your current operating system or host operating system using Oracle Virtual Box and then can install operating system of your choice on these newly created virtual Machines. Thus, this way, one host operating system is capable of running multiple Guest operating systems.
Supported host operating systems
Oracle Virtual Box is cross-platform application. It can be easily installed on Linux, Mac OS X, Windows ( XP, Vista, Windows 7, 8 ) , Solaris operating systems. It supports both 32-bit and 64-bit architectures for host and guest operating systems. 32 bit host operating systems can have 64-bit guest virtual machines and vice versa.
Supported Guest operating Systems
You can install Windows, Linux, BSD, OS/2, Solaris, Haiku operating systems on the virtual machines created by Virtual Box. You can find the complete list of supported guest operating systems from this list.
Virtual Box application was taken over by Sun Microsystems in 2008, Oracle Corporation continued work on it as well and recently released Virtualbox 4.3.24. Virtualbox 4.3.24 took attention of the professionals because it is the very first Virtualization application to Support Linux kernel 4.0. Virtual Box is very vibrant application and it receives regular updates and bug fixes.
Let’s see how we can install Virtualbox 4.3.24 on Ubuntu and create Virtual Machines using this.
First of all, we need to edit APT source file and include detail for the required package. Edit /etc/apt/sources.list file in Gedit application by running this command.
sudo gedit /etc/apt/sources.list
Ubuntu 14.10 users should add following line:
deb http://download.virtualbox.org/virtualbox/debian utopic contrib
Ubuntu 14.04 users should add following:
deb http://download.virtualbox.org/virtualbox/debian trusty contrib
wget http://download.virtualbox.org/virtualbox/debian/oracle_vbox.asc -O- | sudo apt-key add -
sudo apt-get update
That’s all, Your Ubuntu System is ready to install Virtualbox now. Simply run following command to install Virtualbox 4.3.24.
sudo apt-get install virtualbox-4.3
Here is the welcome screen of Virtualbox 4.3.24.
Creating Virtual Machines using VirtualBox 4.3.24
Virtualbox 4.3.24 provides very user-friendly and graphically rich interface to create virtual machines. Simply click “New” option and “Create Virtual Machine” dialogue box will be displayed. Specify the name of your Virtual Machine, Type, Version and hit “Next”.
Create a new virtual hard drive from here, simply choose “create a virtual hard drive now” option and click “Create”. You can use any existing virtual drive too if you want.
Next step, choose if you want your hard disk to be "Dynamically allocated" or "fixed". "Dynamically allocated" is preferred choice here as it will cater the current and future needs of your virtual machine.
Last step, specify the size and location of Virtual hard drive and click “Create” button.
That’s all, Your new Virtual Machine is ready now.
Boot Virtual Machine using ISO files
When a new VM is created, it will be in “Powered-off” mode by default. First, You need to specify how you want to boot this virtual machine and then you will be able to start it. Let’s see how we can boot this newly created virtual machine using ISO file.
For the sake of demonstration, we have downloaded and saved the ISO file of Ubuntu on the disk already. Right click the newly created virtual machine name in the left side small window and choose “Settings”.
In the “Settings” dialogue box, click the “System” option and make sure Hard Disk is on the top of “Boot Oder”, use up arrow key to move Hard drive to the top.
Now click the “Storage” option and load the ISO file here. From right side, under “Attributes”, select “Choose a Virtual CD/DVD disk” option from drop down.
Browse to the location where you have stored the ISO file and select it.
That’s all, click “Ok” here. You are done with the required setting now.
Its time we start the Virtual Machine, Right click it and choose “Start”. Virtual Box will start the machine using the ISO file we specified earlier.
There you go, Ubuntu is booting up from ISO file. We can now proceed with its installation in the virtual machine.
Virtual Box is a must app for software developers, application testers and bloggers. Not only professionals, but normal computer users can benefit from it alot. As we described above with detailed screenshots, its installation and usage is pretty easy and users find it intuitive . Visit Virtual Box official site for most details and exciting updates about the app. Have a good day ahead !