When you have to test multiple operating systems and software on different platforms, VirtualBox is a tool to have. It is a cross-platform virtualization software that allows you to run guest operating system inside a windows of the host computer. The guest machine can Windows, Linux or Mac operating systems.
VirtualBox is a powerful application that I’d recommend every IT student to download and install to create virtual labs. These labs can be a self-contained environments where you can test different applications and settings.
This brief tutorial shows students and new users how to install VirtualBox on Ubuntu 16.04 LTS servers. If you’re reading this post then you probably know a thing or two about VirtualBox.
To install VirtualBox on Ubuntu servers, follow the steps below
Step 1: Update Ubuntu
Before installing VirtualBox, run the commands below to update the Ubuntu server.
sudo apt-get update && sudo apt-get dist-upgrade && sudo apt-get autoremove
Step 2: Install Required Linux Headers
Now that your system is updated, run the commands below to install required Ubuntu linux headers.
sudo apt-get -y install gcc make linux-headers-$(uname -r) dkms
Step 3: Add VirtualBox Repository and key
After installing the required package above, run the commands below to install VirtualBox repository key.
wget -q https://www.virtualbox.org/download/oracle_vbox_2016.asc -O- | sudo apt-key add -
wget -q https://www.virtualbox.org/download/oracle_vbox.asc -O- | sudo apt-key add -
Next run the commands below to add VirtualBox repository to your system.
sudo sh -c 'echo "deb http://download.virtualbox.org/virtualbox/debian $(lsb_release -sc) contrib" >> /etc/apt/sources.list'
Step 4: Install VirtualBox
After adding the repository and key, run the commands below to install VirtualBox 5.2. At the time of this writing the latest version of the software was 5.2. If there are newer versions available, please replace the 2 below with the current latest.
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install virtualbox-5.2
To verify if VirtualBox is installed, run the commands below.
Step 5: Install VirtualBox Extension Pack
Everytime you install VirtualBox make sure to install the extension pack as well. The pack enables VRDP (Virtual Remote Desktop Protocol) and many other enhancements.
To install it, run the commands below
curl -O http://download.virtualbox.org/virtualbox/5.2.4/Oracle_VM_VirtualBox_Extension_Pack-5.2.4-119785.vbox-extpack
sudo VBoxManage extpack install Oracle_VM_VirtualBox_Extension_Pack-5.2.4-119785.vbox-extpack
Agree to the terms and install.
Run the commands below to view the extension pack installed.
VBoxManage list extpacks
The results should look like the one below:
richard@ubuntu1604:~$ VBoxManage list extpacks
Extension Packs: 1
Pack no. 0: Oracle VM VirtualBox Extension Pack
Description: USB 2.0 and USB 3.0 Host Controller, Host Webcam, VirtualBox RDP, PXE ROM, Disk Encryption, NVMe.
VRDE Module: VBoxVRDP
This is how to install VirtualBox on Ubuntu 16.04 LTS servers
In our next post, we’ll show you how to create new guest machines from the command line in VirtualBox. Until then, please stay tuned.
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