Creating VirtualBox Guest Machines

Students lesson 22 assignment: How to create VirtualBox guest machines for Ubuntu?

VirtualBox is a virtualization software that allows students and users to run multiple virtual guest machines simultaneously on a single host computer.

With it, you can run Windows, Linux, MacOS and other operating systems from a single computer instead of purchasing computers for each operating system.

It’s a great software that I’d recommend every student learning to become IT professional should have. We’ve covered VirtualBox on this site a lot, so if you haven’t heard about it, search and learn about it.

This brief tutorial today is going to show those who have already read our previous tutorials and installed VirtualBox on their computer, learn how to install guest machines.

VirtualBox supports guest machines created for Windows, Linux, MacOS and other systems. But for this tutorial, we’re going to be creating a guest machine for Ubuntu OS.

Step 1: Prerequisites

Before you continue below, you must first learn to install VirtualBox. To learn how to do that, read the post below:

After installing VirtualBox, continue below with creating your first virtual guest machine.

Step 2: Create Ubuntu Guest Machine

To create a guest machine for Ubuntu, click New as shown below.

The New button highlighted below creates new VMs

Ubuntu VirtualBox guest machine

Next, select the memory (RAM) in megabytes that should be allocated for the virtual machine. For Ubuntu desktop systems, the default memory size that are allocated is 1024MB which comes up to be 1GB. You may increase it for better VM performance.

Ubuntu virtualbox memory size

Next, create a virtual hard disk for a new guest machine. If you have existing virtual disk, this is where you add it as well.

Virtualbox ubuntu hard disk

Next, select VDI (VirtualBox Disk Image) file type. This is the default file type selected for guest machines created on VirtualBox. If you’ll use the disk on other virtualization software, then you may have to choose the VHD option.

VirtualBox disk image for Ubuntu

Next, select a “Dynamically allocated” storage for the guest machine. The dynamic allocated disk will only use space on the physical hard disk as it fills up to the maximum fixed size.

virtualbox dynamic hard disk drive for ubuntu

Next, provide a name and location of the disk you’re creating. The size by default is 8GB for Ubuntu desktops. You can increase as you wish for better performance. Click Create to finish the virtual machine creation process.

virtualbox file location

After that, a new guest machine will be created and ready to use.

Step 3: Select OS media to install

After creating the virtual machine, click Settings –> Storage –> Controller:IDE (Empty) –> browse for the ISO image or select Host Drive letter to install from CD. After selecting the image to use to install from, save the changes.

virtualbox ubuntu ISO media

Finally, click Start to start the virtual guest machine and begin installing your operating system.

start virtualbox guest machine on ubuntu

That’s it! This is how one create a guest machine on VirtualBox virtualization software.


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