VirtualBox: I can’t access from the guest (Windows 10 trial) serial ports (COM) from the host (Xubuntu 18.04)

  • Backstory: One day I’m on Ubuntu and my tablet bricked so hard that I could not get it to boot into recovery but I got it to boot into EDL so now I just need some images and a program to load them, unfortunately, there isn’t such thing for Ubuntu. But there is VirtualBox right? I installed it then installed Windows 10 on it and installed XiomiFlash on Windows 10.

One

BIG

PROBLEM

I can’t get the COM ports working to flash the firmware on my tablet (As you may or may not know the images are flashed through a serial port) So what do I do now, I don’t want to install Windows 10 on my PC I like Ubuntu. Is accessing serial ports from the guest even possible?

Why does a VirtualBox error completely locks my Ubuntu (lubuntu) desktop?

I’m using VirtualBox (Version 5.1.38_Ubuntu r122592) under lubuntu (Linux hostname 4.4.0-148-generic #174-Ubuntu SMP Tue May 7 12:20:14 UTC 2019 x86_64 x86_64 x86_64 GNU/Linux) to start turbo debug under a DOS 6.22 VM.

When I start td.exe VirtualBox hangs and completely locks my desktop.

Here the screenshot:

enter image description here

System information:

NAME="Ubuntu" VERSION="16.04.6 LTS (Xenial Xerus)" ID=ubuntu PRETTY_NAME="Ubuntu 16.04.6 LTS" VERSION_ID="16.04" 

Virtualbox installation information:

virtualbox:   Installed: 5.1.38-dfsg-0ubuntu1.16.04.3   Candidate: 5.1.38-dfsg-0ubuntu1.16.04.3   Version table:  *** 5.1.38-dfsg-0ubuntu1.16.04.3 500         500 http://us.archive.ubuntu.com/ubuntu xenial-updates/multiverse amd64 Packages         100 /var/lib/dpkg/status      5.1.38-dfsg-0ubuntu1.16.04.2 500         500 http://us.archive.ubuntu.com/ubuntu xenial-security/multiverse amd64 Packages      5.0.18-dfsg-2build1 500         500 http://us.archive.ubuntu.com/ubuntu xenial/multiverse amd64 Packages 

Do you know how to solve this issue? What’s the reason?

Thanks in advance.

Can I run a modern version of Ubuntu on VirtualBox with my Celeron processor?

I am running VirtualBox 6.0.8 under Ubuntu 18.04.2 LTS. I have a Intel Celeron N3060 processor which I think may be causing some problems.

I planned to run Ubuntu in the VM. However:

16.04.6 32-bit hangs on installation. 14.04.6 32-bit will not load and eventually is “aborted” by VirtualBox. 12.04.5 32-bit works fine but support ended in April 2017.

I can only assume that my processor is so limited that I need a basic stripped down version of Linux.

Can anyone please suggest an Ubuntu-like OS which is supported by the manufacturer and which will run under my processor in VirtualBox?

Or perhaps there is an alternative way to get Ubuntu running under the VM? Thanks.

VirtualBox & Spectre V4

I found the following ticket in the VirtualBox issue tracker:

https://www.virtualbox.org/ticket/17987

The important (in the context of this question) part is that the guest OS (Debian) running in VirtualBox 5.2.18 on a patched Debian host thought it was vulnerable to Spectre v4 (Speculative Store Bypass).

A few months have passed and I’m seeing the same behavior in a fully patched Ubuntu 18.04 running in the latest VirtualBox 6.0.8:

$   cat /sys/devices/system/cpu/vulnerabilities/spec_store_bypass Vulnerable 

I believe that the direct cause is that VirtualBox doesn’t seem to pass the SSBD flag to the VMs, even though the host OS (in my case macOS Mojave) is fully patched.

My questions are:

  1. In general, does Spectre v4 allow VM guests to read host memory (i.e. break the host/guest barrier)? I couldn’t find a definitive answer..
  2. Assuming the host OS (in my case it’s macOS Mojave) is fully patched, does that protect the host from the guest?
  3. (If the answer to the above question is negative) Do the available VirtualBox mitigations for other related vulnerabilities(*) fix the problem (or at least significantly decrease its severity)?

(*) VirtualBox 6.0.8 exposes the following mitigations (which can be enabled using VBoxManage modifyvm [1]):

--mds-clear-on-vm-entry on --l1d-flush-on-vm-entry on --spec-ctrl on --ibpb-on-vm-exit on --ibpb-on-vm-entry on 

[1] https://www.virtualbox.org/manual/ch08.html#vboxmanage-cmd-overview

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How to resize Android screen in VirtualBox with UEFI?

I have 64-bit Android 7.1.2, obtained from android-x86_64-7.1-rc1.iso. I installed it on VirtualBox (latest version, 5.1.2.8) with UEFI mode. (The host is 64-bit Linux Lubuntu 16.04.)

The installation all works fine apart from the fact that the screen is fixed at 1024×768. The various sizes given in the VirtualBox menu > View > Virtual Screen 1, which range from 640×480 to 1920×1200, are all greyed out.

I would like to be able to resize the Android screen, making it both smaller and larger, and even full-screen if possible. Sadly, the usual method, Guest Additions, isn’t supported on Android.

I’ve tried following various instructions. The vast majority seem to be valid only for non-UEFI installations, although I tried them anyway. The only one for UEFI that I found doesn’t work for me.

The methods that I have found include:

  • Issue the command:
    vboxmanage setextradata Android CustomVideoMode1 1152x864x32
    (this obviously would work only for that one resolution).

  • Adding various commands to Grub, either at boot or permanently in EFI/boot/grub/grub.cfg:

    • set gfxpayload=keep
    • set gfxpayload=1152x864x32
    • vga=ask
    • vga=834

I am at a total loss how to proceed. Can you help, please?

How to run Android in Virtualbox on Linux?

For days I try to get Android 5 or higher running inside Virtualbox on Linux (here: Mint 18.1), without success. At best, I get past the boot menu (Grub), the system switches to graphics mode, and I see the pulsating “Android”: After a few seconds, disk access ceases, and the VM hangs with 100% CPU load.

I’ve searched the web up and down, and tried all the tricks I could find: increasing RAM to 2G, video memory to 128M, CPU count to 2. Switching the VM from “Linux (other)” to “BSD”, trying 64bit and 32bit images (the 64bit images even get stuck at a black screen before the pulsating “Android” letters), the latter in 64bit and 32bit VMs, from the Android-x86 project via RemixOS to Phoenix, Android 5.1 to 7 – nothing gives.

Where’s the trick?

Please don’t point me to those numerous guides based on Virtualbox running on Windows. I’ve followed a bunch of them without luck. Nor do I want to use QEMU for that (draws in too many dependencies I don’t want to install), or Genymotion etc (where I’d have to register). I’m interested in help from those who’ve got it running fine in Virtualbox on Linux.

I’ve also seen similar questions here and followed the advice from their answers:

  • Android x86 Marshmallow not booting on Virtualbox and VMware Workstation
    adding vga=834 nomodeset xforcevesa to the kernel options just caused the hang happen even earlier. The other advices I already had followed. The .vdi taken from OSBoxes had the same issues.
  • other questions are either not for Virtualbox, or concerning pre-Lolliop. As the linked question above shows, the problem seems also to be present with VMWare.

How did you get it to run?


Note in between: I might soon be able to self-answer, but first need to verify and, if possible, improve: I meanwhile managed to fully boot an ISO with RemixOS, using “FreeBSD 64bit” for that 32bit image. The boot just took AGES to complete (about 15min before the pulsing “RemixOS” text got replaced by the welcome screen). It might be that’s the first boot only, and after installing it to “disk” and having that running once, the next boot is faster. As soon as I find time, I’ll dig deeper – and then will remove this paragraph and post an answer instead.