Posted by: Rick Vanover
Product announcements, Rick Vanover, Sun xVM, VirtualBox
Sun has released VirtualBox 1.6.4, and the upgrade process requires some forward planning. Version 1.6.4 is a collection of fixes to the previous release that mostly revolve around shared folders and the VRDP (VirtualBox Remote Desktop Protocol) implementation. Here is what you need to know if you are upgrading:
During the upgrade installation, you are presented with the familiar message about installing a device that has not passed Windows logo testing. These messages are common across virtualization platforms, as these drivers and devices enable the hypervisor to present the virtual machines. A typical message is shown below:
After these messages are accepted, the installation will continue and allow you to access your existing VMs from the previous version that you may have.
The one unfortunate point of the upgrade process is that any host interfaces created on an existing installation of 1.6.2 or earlier will be removed by the upgrade process. Overall, I think VirtualBox’s networking implementation is a little short of both VMware Workstation and VMware Server’s VMware bridge protocol. Before you embark on the upgrade, I recommend you enumerate any host interfaces that you have created. Then, make a quick script in the following fashion that will recreate them with the same names you already have:
VBoxManage createhostif "VM-Bridge1"
VBoxManage createhostif "VM-Bridge2"
VBoxManage createhostif "VM-Bridge3"
Any VMs with a bridged interface will be configured to an invalid network interface after the upgrade to 1.6.4. I have an earlier blog posting about bridged networking on VirtualBox, and the commands and planning points are unchanged from 1.6.2 to 1.6.4.
The VMs will not need to be upgraded directly, but it would not hurt to get the 1.6.4 version of Guest Additions installed to optimize the corrected functionality between these two versions. Once the new version is installed, the systray icon and the
VBoxControl getversion will show the 1.6.4 release.
Version 1.6.4 is still lean, at only 23 MB, it remains a ready to go virtualization platform and is still freely available from the Sun website.