VirtualBox: How to Install any OS on Windows

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Mastering the Art of Virtualization with VirtualBox

VirtualBox is an open-source virtualization software that allows you to run multiple operating systems on a single physical computer. It’s a powerful tool that creates virtual machines (VMs) in which you can install and run different operating systems, essentially simulating a separate computer within your existing computer. This guide will take you through the basic installation process of any operating system to your Windows PC with the help of VirtualBox.

Key Features of VirtualBox:

  • Virtualization Technology: VirtualBox is a type 2 hypervisor, which means it runs on top of an existing operating system. It’s available for a variety of host operating systems, including Windows, macOS, Linux, and more. You can install VirtualBox on your host operating system to create and manage virtual machines.

  • Supported Guest Operating Systems: It is compatible with a wide range of guest operating systems, including various versions of Windows, Linux distributions, macOS, BSD, and more. This makes it versatile for testing, development, and running applications that require different environments.

  • Isolation: Each virtual machine created with VirtualBox is isolated from the host system and other virtual machines. This means that activities in one virtual machine do not affect the others or the host system. Isolation provides security and stability.

  • Snapshot and Cloning: It allows you to take snapshots of your virtual machines at various points in time. Snapshots act as backups, allowing you to revert to a previous state if something goes wrong. You can also clone virtual machines to create duplicates for different purposes.

  • Networking Options: It provides flexible networking options, allowing you to configure network connections for your virtual machines. You can choose from bridged, NAT, internal, and host-only networking to tailor the network environment to your needs.

  • USB Device Support: It can provide access to USB devices connected to your host system, which can be useful for tasks such as connecting external storage, smartphones, or USB peripherals to your virtual machines.

  • Guest Additions: It offers “Guest Additions” or “Tools” for guest operating systems. These are additional software packages that enhance the integration between the host and guest systems. They enable features like better screen resolution, shared clipboard, and seamless mouse integration.

  • Performance Optimization: VirtualBox is designed to provide reasonable performance, with options for adjusting the number of CPU cores, RAM, and video memory allocated to each virtual machine. This allows you to balance resources according to your needs.

  • Open Source and Cross-Platform: It is open-source software and is actively developed and maintained by Oracle. It’s available for a variety of host operating systems and is free to use, making it accessible to a broad user base.

  • Community and Documentation: There is a strong community of VirtualBox users, and you can find extensive documentation and online forums to help you troubleshoot issues and learn more about using VirtualBox effectively.

Installation Process

Installing an operating system in VirtualBox is a straightforward process. Here are the general steps to install an operating system on a virtual machine using VirtualBox:

  • Download VirtualBox: If you haven’t already, download and install Oracle VM VirtualBox from the official website (

  • Obtain the Operating System ISO: You should have the installation ISO or CD/DVD image of the operating system you want to install. This image contains the installation files for the OS.

Operating System Installation:
  • Open VirtualBox:

    • Launch VirtualBox from your host operating system.
  • Create a New Virtual Machine:

    • Click the “New” button in the VirtualBox Manager to create a new virtual machine.
    • Give your virtual machine a name, choose the type of the operating system (e.g., Windows, Linux), and select the version (if applicable).
  • Allocate Memory (RAM):

    • Assign an appropriate amount of RAM for your virtual machine. Make sure not to allocate all of your host computer’s memory, as your host OS needs some RAM to operate smoothly.
  • Create a Virtual Hard Disk:

    • Select “Create a virtual hard disk now” and click “Create.”
    • Choose the default VirtualBox Disk Image (VDI) format for your virtual hard disk.
    • You can choose to create a fixed-size or dynamically allocated hard disk. A dynamically allocated disk will grow as you use it, while a fixed-size disk takes up the full allocated space immediately.
  • Set Virtual Hard Disk Size:

    • Allocate an appropriate amount of storage space for your virtual machine’s hard disk. This depends on the requirements of the operating system and the applications you plan to install.
  • Configure VM Settings:

    • In the VirtualBox Manager, select your new virtual machine, and click “Settings.” Here, you can fine-tune your VM’s configuration. Adjust settings for CPUs, display, and storage as needed.
  • Attach ISO Image:

    • In the VM settings, go to the “Storage” section.
    • Under “Controller: IDE” or “Controller: SATA,” click on the empty CD/DVD icon and select “Choose Virtual Optical Disk File.”
    • Locate and select the ISO image of the operating system you want to install.
  • Start the Virtual Machine:

    • In the VirtualBox Manager, select your VM and click “Start.”
  • Install the Operating System:

    • The virtual machine will boot from the ISO image you attached. Follow the installation prompts and instructions as if you were installing the OS on a physical computer.
    • During the installation, you’ll be prompted to select language, time zone, disk partitions, and other settings. Follow these instructions to complete the installation.
  • Install Guest Additions (Optional but recommended):

    • After the operating system is installed, you can install VirtualBox Guest Additions, which enhance integration between the host and guest OS. This usually improves things like screen resolution, clipboard sharing, and file sharing.
  • Complete Setup:

    • After the OS installation is complete, you may need to set up user accounts, passwords, and any additional configurations required by the OS.

That’s it! You’ve successfully installed an operating system on a virtual machine using. You can now run and manage the virtual machine as needed for your specific tasks or projects.

This was the basic process for installing operating systems on VirtualBox. The process for some operating systems may vary. We have prepared some step-by-step guides for various operating systems that may help:


VirtualBox is a versatile virtualization platform that enables users to create and manage virtual machines, allowing for the simultaneous operation of multiple operating systems on a single physical computer. It’s widely used for software development, testing, system administration, and educational purposes, providing a flexible and cost-effective way to work with various operating systems without the need for multiple physical computers.

That’s All Folks!

Luke Barber

Hello, fellow tech enthusiasts! I'm Luke, a passionate learner and explorer in the vast realms of technology. Welcome to my digital space where I share the insights and adventures gained from my journey into the fascinating worlds of Arduino, Python, Linux, Ethical Hacking, and beyond. Armed with qualifications including CompTIA A+, Sec+, Cisco CCNA, Unix/Linux and Bash Shell Scripting, JavaScript Application Programming, Python Programming and Ethical Hacking, I thrive in the ever-evolving landscape of coding, computers, and networks. As a tech enthusiast, I'm on a mission to simplify the complexities of technology through my blogs, offering a glimpse into the marvels of Arduino, Python, Linux, and Ethical Hacking techniques. Whether you're a fellow coder or a curious mind, I invite you to join me on this journey of continuous learning and discovery.

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