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Virtual Box and USB Devices

Community Veteran
Posts: 1,128
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Registered: 28-08-2007

Virtual Box and USB Devices

Hi folks, I haven't been around for a while so I hope everyone's keeping well and still going at it hammer and tong about who's got the best OS with a sub argument on which flavour.  Wink Grin
Just thought I'd pop in with a quick question for the people who know, Daughter got an Ipod for crimbo now she's hassling me to sort out itunes to back up, put her stuff on etc. Can't be bothered having to pull my work laptop out the bag all the time and wait forever to it boots up. I've decided to download both itunes and Blackberry Desktop Manager to use in Virtualbox on my Precise install. You've probably guessed by now that I need to install guest additions and expansion pack. I'm pretty sure I already have guest additions, at the time to make xp run in full screen.  Undecided
So anyway I've noticed that I'm running Virtualbox 4.1.12 which is the stock one from the repo. The latest edition from the Website is 4.2.6. Just wondering firstly if I install 4.2.6 from a downloaded Deb is it going to totally wipe my existing installation? I have XP and Mint 13 as guests and that's really going to be a pain to have to install and update all over again. If I don't update VB do I need to find guest additions and expansion packs to got with the 4.1.12 version already installed or will the most recent ones for 4.2.6 work ok?
BTW I followed the instructions from the link above to add 4.2.6 to my repo but can't seem to find it "(Up to version 3.2 the packages were located in the non-free section, starting with version 4.0 are located in the contrib section)" Where do I find the contrib section?
I've had things running far too sweet for a long time to rocks things up  Grin As you are aware I hate problem solving computers, drives me  Crazy
16 REPLIES
Community Veteran
Posts: 1,136
Thanks: 2
Registered: 30-07-2007

Re: Virtual Box and USB Devices

Updating VB from the non ubuntu repos won't toast your existing VMs. they are stored in your home directory and the package manager knows nothing about them.
You should have a package available for the guest additions. On debian this is called virtualbox-guest-additions-iso, it's probably the same in ubuntu but an apt-cache search virtualbox will show you the available packages.
It would be unwise to mix different versions of the guest additions and virtualbox packages as I expect they are tailored to work with each other.
Once the package is installed there should be an option from the window containing the running VM to install the guest add-ons, this usually just mounts the iso in the virtual cd drive and autorun does the rest.
On the Mint VM you probably want to (if you haven't already ) install the following packages:

  • virtualbox-guest-dkms

  • virtualbox-guest-utils

  • virtualbox-guest-x11


HTH
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Community Veteran
Posts: 1,128
Thanks: 8
Registered: 28-08-2007

Re: Virtual Box and USB Devices

Thanks mate. I actually found the versions to go with my 4.1.1.2 from Here maybe I should just go ahead now I know it won't wipe my existing installs. I think I have guest editions installed already, I notice the iso is still in my downloads folder and I seem to remember having to do this some while ago so the guest would go full screen on my pc as oppose in a box. I just need the extension pack to stop my ubuntu picking up the ipod when it's plugged in. Of course there is two to pick from  Lips are sealed Can't seem to find 4.2.6 in the repo though even though I added it to my sources!
Community Veteran
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Re: Virtual Box and USB Devices

Looking at the differences between 4.1 and 4.2 there doesn't appear to be anything to affect XP there, so you may as well go with the ones in the ubuntu repositories.
I'm not familiar enough with the ubuntu package manager (unless you go to a terminal and use plain ol' aptitude, then it should be a case of searching for virtualbox and picking 4.2 from the available versions). After you added the VB repository did you force an update of available packages?
The two extension packs will be for 32 and 64bit host OSes so pick whichever is appropriate for you.
F9 member since 4 Sep 1999
F9 ADSL customer since 27 Aug 2004
DLM manages your line the same way DRM manages your rights.
Look at all the pretty graphs! (now with uptime logging!)
Community Veteran
Posts: 1,128
Thanks: 8
Registered: 28-08-2007

Re: Virtual Box and USB Devices

Quote
After you added the VB repository did you force an update of available packages?
No I never, how do I force an update? I installed the extension pack btw.  Ubuntu is still picking up the ipod and not the guest xp. The alternate extension pack when I tried that was just the same. It said already install do I want re-install so just clicked no. I'm reading somewhere it may be to do with priveliges!
I'll try re-booting and see if that helps.
Community Veteran
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Re: Virtual Box and USB Devices

I expect there is an option in the package manager to check for updates. But a reboot may also force that to happen.
You'll also need the instructions here: https://help.ubuntu.com/community/VirtualBox/USB so that you can use USB devices in VirtualBox
F9 member since 4 Sep 1999
F9 ADSL customer since 27 Aug 2004
DLM manages your line the same way DRM manages your rights.
Look at all the pretty graphs! (now with uptime logging!)
Community Veteran
Posts: 1,128
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Registered: 28-08-2007

Re: Virtual Box and USB Devices

Thanks doing that now BRB I'll let you know.
Community Veteran
Posts: 1,128
Thanks: 8
Registered: 28-08-2007

Re: Virtual Box and USB Devices

No the ipod is still been picked up by Ubuntu first after carrying out the instructions in your link. Comes up as no usb device available. HMMM
Community Veteran
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Re: Virtual Box and USB Devices

Its possible Ubuntu auto-mounted it, so you'd need to eject it before starting VirtualBox so it has exclusive access to it.
Other than that, I'm out of my comfort zone, time for someone more Ubuntuy to take over the thread  Crazy
F9 member since 4 Sep 1999
F9 ADSL customer since 27 Aug 2004
DLM manages your line the same way DRM manages your rights.
Look at all the pretty graphs! (now with uptime logging!)
Community Veteran
Posts: 1,128
Thanks: 8
Registered: 28-08-2007

Re: Virtual Box and USB Devices

There's no need brother, not sure what's going on. I did an empty filter and then all of a sudden it started recognising usb devices. The ipod came up and as a long shot I tried my playbook and now that's also working with Blackberry desktop manager  Shocked As it happens I can't get the playbook to work on two other windows machines. Something that is currently upsetting a lot of playbook users in RIM's support forum. Now I can finally sideload Amdroid apps onto it.
Wow, wow and wow. Now I wish it wasn't so late so I could spend the night loading apps  Cool Thanks again mate job sorted!
Community Veteran
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Registered: 28-08-2007

Re: Virtual Box and USB Devices

Can't seem to login to itunes from the virtualbox xp. Says I'm not part of the administrator group. I am down as an admin account on the virtual xp. Would that be a virtualbox issue or itunes you reckon?
*edit my bad was putting wrong username in  Embarrassed now I just need to work out how to use my cd drive in a virtual environment. Nothings ever simple!
*edit 2  Grin Managed to get things sorted out, got the cd player working with the guest rather than the host. It would appear that if I import a music CD into itunes it won't the do another right of the bat unless I exit itunes and restart it. Off to bother the itunes people now.  Roll eyes I'm fairly confident it's a problem with that rather than virtualbox though.
On a positive note virtual box says that it can't write files from from discs when in pass through mode but apparemtly that's not the case it would appear  Cool Finally is there a way I can let my daughter access my xp host from her user account or would I have to set up Vbox and a whole new xp install just to use itunes? Sounds unlikely buy you never know!
Community Veteran
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Re: Virtual Box and USB Devices

Is her account on the same pc?
You would probably need to add her to the vboxusers group, change the permissions on the xp folder (VM), and then give her a shortcut to the XP machine on her desktop.
Not tried it but that sounds like it would work.
Community Veteran
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Registered: 28-08-2007

Re: Virtual Box and USB Devices

Yeah mate sounds feasible, she is on the same pc. I'll try what you suggest. She is actually sharing an account with her mother, I may have to give that account admin privileges.  Undecided I suppose though as long as she doesn't know my password she can't be making any big changes.
Seems a bit nuts having to put another full working copy of xp on there just so she can use Itunes.
I was looking into how Ubuntu deals with the ipod to see if it was just a case of me dragging and dropping music onto it as a usb storage but the ipod file system is very complicated to say the least. It's quite hard to work out exactly where the music files should be.
What do you guys use for ripping cd's these days? I've been using juicer. Importing directly through itunes in the guest creates quite large files even with the quality turned down a bit. I had the settings on mp3 high and the resulting files were still about cd size 700mb ish.
Community Veteran
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Re: Virtual Box and USB Devices

You shouldn't need to grant admin privileges just to run the vm.
I use http://guayadeque.org for my music collection, It is supposed to handle ipod's as well. (I only have a 1st gen shuffle and it is supported, once I kicked the auto mount script about a bit.)
I haven't ripped a cd for a few years now, but (just checked) k3b will rip with id3's etc.
Superuser
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Re: Virtual Box and USB Devices

Quote
I was looking into how Ubuntu deals with the ipod to see if it was just a case of me dragging and dropping music onto it as a usb storage but the ipod file system is very complicated to say the least. It's quite hard to work out exactly where the music files should be.
AFAIK all versions from 10.04 upwards had built in support for IPod/IPhone. Applications such as RythymBox should sync with the IPod. Have a look here https://help.ubuntu.com/community/PortableDevices/iPhone