December 28, 2008 · Networking · Email This Post

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We have already discussed how to install VirtualBox 2.1.0  in ubuntu one of the important change is Host interface networking made easy with Host Interface Networking, VirtualBox uses a device driver on your host system that filters data from your physical network adapter. This driver is therefore called a “net filter” driver.

This allows VirtualBox to intercept data from the physical network and inject data into it, effectively creating a new network interface in software. When a guest is using such a new software interface, it looks to the host system as though the guest were physically connected to the interface using a network cable: the host can send data to the guest through that interface and receive data from it. This means that you can set up routing or bridging between the guest and the rest of your network.

VirtualBox needs a device driver on your host system. The way
Host Interface Networking works has been completely rewritten with VirtualBox 2.0 and 2.1, depending on the host operating system. From the user perspective, the main difference is that complex configuration is no longer necessary on any of the supported host operating systems.

With the new mechanism, to enable Host Interface Networking, You need to follow this procedure.

1) Go to Applications--->System Tools--->Sun xVM Virtualbox

2) Once virtualbox opens you need to open the Settings dialog of a virtual machine, go to the “Network” page .


3) Select “Host Interface” in the drop down list for the “Attached to” field. Finally, select desired host interface from the list at the bottom of the page, which contains the physical network interfaces of your systems.


4) Once you selected you should see similar to the following screen click on ok


On Linux hosts, functionality is limited when using wireless interfaces for Host Interface Networking. Currently, VirtualBox supports only IPv4 over wireless.For other protocols such as IPv6 and IPX, you must choose a wired interface.Also, setting the MTU to less than 1500 bytes on wired interfaces provided by the sky2 driver on the Marvell Yukon II EC Ultra Ethernet NIC is known to cause packet losses under certain conditions.

If you want to know how to setup host interface networking in VirtualBox 2.0 check here

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3 Comments to “Host interface networking made easy in VirtualBox 2.1.0”

  1. hamen says:

    Easy and clear, but when I boot my WinXP VM it freezes my Ubuntu and I gotta reboot. If I use NAT WinXP boots but it’s network-less. Any Ideas?

    Ubuntu 8.04
    VirtualBox 2.1
    WinXP SP2

    [Reply]

  2. KingLooie says:

    This tutorial completely skips over the “how do i have to configure my guest” part.

    It is still not quite clear to me how the HostInterface networking works. Will my guest have the same ip address as in NAT ? Can I still configure my client to use a DHCP server or do I have to assign the IP myself?

    One example for a linux guest and one for winxp would be very helpful.

    [Reply]

  3. KorlaPlankton says:

    “Will my guest have the same ip address as in NAT ?”

    No. It gets an address like it was a real machine.

    “Can I still configure my client to use a DHCP server or do I have to assign the IP myself?”

    If by ‘client’ you mean guest, yes you can use DHCP. The point of the Host Interface connection is that your guest OS appears to be a real machine to the network. Thus configuring the guest OS is (or should be) identical to configuring another physical computer.

    [Reply]

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