Testing Windows using VirtualBox


  • A PC which has a Microsoft OS licence (of some form). The licence to upgrade to Win7/8/10 is provided under Campus agreement.
  • ~27Gb free on a local partition
  • BIOS set to use virtualisation
  • An activity to pass the 10 minutes or so required to copy and untar the disk image
  • A burning desire to test something on a non-MDT windows platform

Obtaining and untarring the disk image(s) (using Windows 7 as example):

cp /afs/inf.ed.ac.uk/group/us-unit/win_images/win7.vdi.tgz /disk/scratch
tar xzvf win7.vdi.tgz

Untarring this file will increase its size to around 26G

Using these disk images with VirtualBox

Fire up VirtualBox on your DICE desktop.

Hit 'New' and fill in the boxes:


Set your memory allocation (at least 2G):


Select Hard Drive:


Point it to the now inflated /disk/scratch/win7.vdi file and that's it. Start up your windows 7 test machine and enjoy the wonders..


  • Don't expect it to run particularly quickly(!)
  • The windows 8 image will attempt and fail an 'automatic repair' on start up. Simply kill it and start it up again - it will be OK second time round
  • The next time you use VirtualBox for a different test, you may have to use the File->Virtual Media Manager to release a previously used hard drive.

-- RichardBell - 13 May 2015

Topic attachments
I Attachment Action Size Date Who Comment
pngpng Screenshot1.png manage 116.1 K 13 May 2015 - 14:46 RichardBell vbox
pngpng Screenshot2.png manage 98.2 K 13 May 2015 - 14:46 RichardBell vbox
pngpng Screenshot3.png manage 102.9 K 13 May 2015 - 14:46 RichardBell vbox
Topic revision: r3 - 20 Jul 2015 - 07:51:48 - AlastairScobie
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