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Friday, May 09, 2008

VirtualBox - New and Improved!

Today, I grabbed a copy of the updated version of VirtualBox. Among other few improvements, VirtualBox for Macs now includes support for Shared Folders.

VirtualBox 1.6 comes with several updated features. You can find out about them here. Of interest to Mac OS X are:
  • MacOS X: fixed seamless mode
  • MacOS X: better desktop integration, several look’n’feel fixes
  • MacOS X: switched to Quartz2D framebuffer
  • MacOS X: added support for shared folders
  • MacOS X: added support for clipboard integration

Support for Shared folders is something that I missed in the earlier version. With some help from a friend who understands computers better than I could ever do, I got the shared folders feature working in the previous version too. Having that feature work out-of-box is better.

First, you need to download the latest version (1.6) from this website. Installing it is straightforward. Once, installed, it will upgrade your earlier version to the latest one (the icon for newer version changed).

When I opened the new version for the first time, it popped up a message something about my settings from the previous version. I chose to Backup those files and proceeded.

In order to get the Shared Folders feature working, follow these steps:
  • Click on 'Devices' menu of the virtual machine window. Among the list of choices, choose 'Shared Folders'. A 'Shared Folders' window appears.
  • Click on the small folder icon with a plus sign on the top right corner to add a new folder that you want to share between Mac and Windows. Another windows pops up.
  • Browse to the folder that you would like to share by clicking the 'Browse' button (little folder icon in the top right corner). It is a good idea to choose your Mac {username} folder. Give a name to that share. Check 'Make Permanent' and then click 'OK'. You will return to the 'Shared Folders' window. You can see your shared folder appear below 'Machine Folders' list. Click 'OK' to exit.
  • Now, go to 'My Computer' in WinXP and click on 'My Network Places'
  • Click 'Add a Network Place' on the left hand panel. 'Add Network Place Wizard' opens. Click 'Next'
  • Among the choices for 'Service Providers', select 'Choose another network location' and click 'Next'. A folder selection box appears
  • Browse to 'My Network Places' >> 'Entire Network' >> 'VirtualBox Shared Folders'. Here you will find the folder that you shared earlier using 'Devices' menu in VirtualBox VM as '\\VBOXSVR\...' Choose that folder and then click 'OK' to exit. And 'Next' to continue
  • Give a name to that network place. Click 'Next' to continue and then 'Finish' to end the wizard

That's it! You now have access to all your Mac files. Just go to 'My Network Places' to see your shared folder.

1 comment:

Gajendra said...

This post was very helpful in making me get the shared folders working on virtualbox installed on Debian Lenny with a XP virtual machine. Great simple explanation. I have given a link to this post on our LUG site page also. (http://lug-iitd.org/Articles/Debian_Help). Keep up the good work.