Upgrading to Virtualbox 2.1 In Ubuntu Intrepid

Virtualbox released their latest version 2.1 last week. If you have not upgraded your existing copy of Virtualbox, I would advise you to do it now.

There are several new features in Virtualbox 2.1.

  • Support for 64-bit guests on 32-bit host operating systems – If you have a 64-bit processor, you can now install/run a 64-bit virtual machine on a 32-bit host. For those who wanted to test out software compatibility on a 64-bit OS, this is the best way for you to do so.
  • Experimental 3D acceleration via OpenGL – If you have a graphics card that can support OpenGL, your Virtualbox VM can now make use of your accelerated 3D hardware to run 3D graphics. Potentially, you would be able to play 3D game on your VM. This means that Linux users will be able to play 3D Windows game on a Windows guest without having to dual-boot Linux and Windows. Currently, this 3D acceleration feature is only supported in Windows XP or 32-bit Vista guest.
  • Full VMDK/VHD support including snapshots – Virtualbox 2.1 is able to support VMDK and VHD virtual hard disk format. This means that you can now use your VMware hard disk or Microsoft VirtualPC hard disk in Virtualbox without any need for conversion.
  • Easier implementation of Host Interface networking – In the past, implementing Host Interface networking requires you to install and configure TUN/TAP. With this new feature, you can easily configure your VM networking to pass through the host interface rather than NAT. By using the host interface, your VM will appear to the host as a network drive connected via a network cable. You can then set up a file server and share files easily between the guest and host.

Installing Virtualbox2.1

If  you have never installed Virtualbox, this is what you need to do to install Virtualbox 2.1.

In your terminal,

gksu gedit /etc/apt/sources.list

Add the following line to the end of the file. Save and close.

deb http://download.virtualbox.org/virtualbox/debian intrepid non-free

Back to your terminal,

wget -q http://download.virtualbox.org/virtualbox/debian/sun_vbox.asc -O- | sudo apt-key add –
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install virtualbox-2.1

Upgrading to Virtualbox 2.1

If you have installed virtualbox 2.0, you will need to remove first before installing virtualbox 2.1.

sudo apt-get autoremove virtualbox-2.0
sudo apt-get install virtualbox-2.1

When it prompts you to convert your old Virtualbox files to the new format, click OK.

virtualbox files conversion

Adding 3D hardware support to your VM

On the main screen of your Virtualbox, highlight the Windows VM (make sure that it powered off) and click on the Setting button in the top menu.

On the General option in the left pane, under the Video Memory Size, checked the box Enable 3D Acceleration.

virtualbox enable 3d acceleration

Implement Host Interface networking

In the Settings page, click on the Network option on the left pane. In the second dropdown bar with the label Attach to, select Host Interface.


That’s it.