Tech Support Guy banner

VirtualBox Outside the Box (what's not in the manual)

562 Views 3 Replies 2 Participants Last post by  lunarlander
Hi! I've used VirtualBox for a few years on a Mac (running Windows 7 guest systems) with no problems. I could access anything on the Mac's hard drive, if not directly, then as part of "Network." This is my first time using VirtualBox for Windows. It wouldn't run at all on Windows 10, so I installed it on Windows 7. Here's the thing:

I want to use 3 or 4 VB machines to work on, or keep an eye on, different things, sometimes simultaneously, for me. To do that, they have to access the computer's main hard drive, AND/OR the computer's operating system (or EFI) drive, which are 2 separate devices. Neither of those would normally be visible to VirtualBox, which only sees inside its own virtual disk, not the host's disks.

So I followed directions on the web to connect to a "raw disk" partition, which isn't that simple, but okay, I did it. But there is an access violation, so it doesn't work. There are no solutions that I found for that, and I changed all the permissions I could find to help that, but it doesn't work.

In my experience, this is a 30-second fix for someone who has done it before, or a fruitless two-week headache for the uninitiated. Anyone done this? Heeeeeellllllp! I would be willing to pay for a professional on-line consultation (e.g., TeamViewer) if it can be done and will work as I outlined above. Thanks!
Not open for further replies.
1 - 4 of 4 Posts
Why do you want to break the VM security to access the host ? If you want to monitor something on the host, then why not install the monitoring program in the host?
Dear lunarlander,
That's a good question. Indeed, why use virtualization for any reason, on any platform? Why not just run what you want to run natively?
In my case, I need to do a few things at a time, and bought a very fast computer to do that. From many years of experience, I know that Windows behaves badly when it comes to allocating resources, and usually grinds to a halt at the worst possible moment to devote 98% of my processing power to "System Idle Process," which is hiding, say, determing the geometry of a CD that has been there for several hours, or checking to see if my backup and antivirus programs are the best ones possible in Microsoft's view.
Virtualization offers the possibility of isolating one machine's background activity from the high-priority activity of another, and of customizing the resources allocated to each machine, so that the mission-critical VM can be installed relatively free of bloatware, TSR and other background tasks, which are relegated to a smaller machine which is always on, and in which I don't care how long things take to get done (e.g., overnight).
I don't want to "break the security." I just can't have all of my work getting done in isolation from my main data; nor can I replicate all the data separately in every machine's VHD. I'd spend a month synchronizing and manually matching up what got done where to all the other machines, for every day of actual work.
I just need the virtual machines all to access my computer's hard drive at times, just as Microsoft Word, Edge, Photoshop and PowerPoint all access my hard drives now, sometimes concurrently, without creating any problems or security breaches. The problem of linking a VM to external resources that aren't DVD drives or USB ports is a well-known one. I'm looking for the best possible workaround at this point. If that workaround turns out to be using VMware instead, then I'd have to learn a whole new utility. I haven't tried Hyper-V because it is not designed to be available on my computer's factory version of Windows 10, nor in Windows 7, and it is not known to have consistent performance advantages over VirtualBox.
I hope that makes my area of interest somewhat more clear! Cheers.
See less See more
I have ran VirtualBox on Win 10 v1809 without problems. Maybe you need to get the latest version of VirtualBox.

I am not very sure which functions you want to dedicate to the VM. So you want to run Word, Edge, Photoshop and Powerpoint in the VM. And what do you want the host to do ?
1 - 4 of 4 Posts
Not open for further replies.