VirtualBox Extensions and Guest Additions

This is not a article on how to install VirtualBox itself or a distro to test, just how to setup access to external hard drives.

Extensions in VirtualBox allow you to see other Hard Drives on your system, either Windows or Linux drives. This article is for after you have a Test OS installed.

Note: Guest Additions are designed to be installed inside a virtual machine after the guest operating system has been installed.

Note: if you have a 32 Bit machine you can not try out 64 Bit OSes in VirtualBox, but if you have a 64 Bit machine, you can try both 32 Bit or 64 Bit.

 I use the Mint 17 XFCE desktop so not everything will look or be the same as you following along.

Step 1:
(Make sure you have VirtualBox installed on your Linux system. If you don’t, open the Software Manager or Center and install it. Next you will need to install a distro to test. Please go to the VirtualBox – Install and VirtualBox – Testing in the How To Menu section of this website.

Step 2: Click on Help then About, this will show you the version of VirtualBox your using. Wright down what version you have. Close the About Screen

Step 3: Open your Web Browser and go to and download the Extension file for the version your using. I am using version 4.3.14 r95030 so I would open the folder that says 4.3.14. Save to your home download folder. Also Download the file called: VBoxGuestAdditions_4.3.14.iso or for the version you have.

Quick Tip: A ISO file is a image file. You can use any disc burning software such as Nero, Xfburn Brasero or what your default is for your Linux Distro to make a CD or DVD from the file.

VirtualBox Index of Downloads

VirtualBox Index of Downloads 1

VirtualBox Index of Downloads 2 iso file

Step 4: From the VirtualBox main screen click on File, then Preferences then Extensions. On the right hand side of the Extension screen click on Add
Packages Icon
. Find the Extension file you downloaded (defaults to your Home Download folder so make sure all your downloads go there) and follow the instructions from here. Should now have your Extensions installed. If you have a Extension already install then skip to step 5

Install Extensions

Step 5: (Making it all Work) Close any Testing OSes you may have open. Next from the VirtualBox main screen click on the Testing OS you want to share drives with, it should now be highlighted, then click on the Settings Icon, then the Shared Folders, now on the right side of the Shared Folder screen click on the Add Icon and Find the Folder Path which is the drive or directory you want to point to. Then give is a Name. The Name is what you will see in your Test OS File Manager when browsing files. Hit OK

VirtualBox About Ver Pic

VirtualBox Add Shared Folder Pic

VirtualBox Add Shared Folder Pic-should look like this

Step 6: From the VirtualBox main screen click on the Testing OS you wish to work with, should now be highlighted, next click on the Settings Icon then click on Storage. This section is how your VirtualBox Testing OS Hard Drives and CD/DVD’s are setup. Click on the CD Icon as shown in the example
picture. Next click on the CD Icon on the right side of your screen in the Attributes section of the screen and select your downloaded ISO file Example: VBoxGuestAdditions_4.3.14.iso (should change to the name of your version). Now when you start your Testing OS, the CD or DVD thinks you have a disc loaded and you can see all the files in the ISO file.

VirtualBox Add ISO CD Pic

Then should look like this:

VirtualBox Add ISO CD Pic-2

Step 7: Next open a File Manager from within your Test OS in VirtualBox and double click on your CD or DVD and you should see all the files you need to extract. Next Extract the files you need for the OS your Testing.    (Will be installed in your Testing Linux OS)

VBoxWindowsAdditions-x86.exe   (Will be installed in your Testing 32 Bit Windows OS)

VBoxWindowsAdditions-amd64.exe   (Will be installed in your Testing 64 Bit Windows OS)

Step 8: (Windows Only) If your Testing a 64 Bit Windows OS then double click on the VBoxWindowsAdditions-amd64.exe from the ISO file (CD / DVD) and install the software. If your Testing a 32 Bit Windows OS then double click on the VBoxWindowsAdditions-x86.exe rom the ISO file (CD / DVD) and install the software. Your in a Windows environment so you install software the same way you always do. While install the driver software,
if it ask you any questions, answer yes or OK to all questions.

Note: This is not a Windows OS shown in the next picture, but shows you the (.exe) files that you will install from within a Windows Testing OS.

VirtualBox Testing OS File Manager CD Open view ISO

Step 9: (Linux Only) In the File Manager click on the CD/DVD in the Left side Tree of the File Manager. Copy the file to your Home Directory. Now open a Terminal window and type in the following command: sudo /home/bob/  (don’t forget to change to your home directory name) it will ask for your login password and hit enter. After it installs the software, reboot the Testing VirtualBox OS your running and you should see your new drive in the Testing OS File Manager on the Left Hand Side.

VirtualBox Testing OS Terminal open to install ISO

If you have any problems or questions please use the Contact Me on the website.








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