VirtualBox is a general-purpose full virtualizer for x86 hardware. Targeted at server, desktop and embedded use, it is now the only professional-quality virtualization solution that is also Open Source Software.
Some of the features of VirtualBox are:
- Modularity. VirtualBox has an extremely modular design with well-defined internal programming interfaces and a client/server design. This makes it easy to control it from several interfaces at once: for example, you can start a virtual machine in a typical virtual machine GUI and then control that machine from the command line, or possibly remotely. VirtualBox also comes with a full Software Development Kit: even though it is Open Source Software, you don't have to hack the source to write a new interface for VirtualBox.
- Virtual machine descriptions in XML. The configuration settings of virtual machines are stored entirely in XML and are independent of the local machines. Virtual machine definitions can therefore easily be ported to other computers.
The following major new features were added:
VM export to Oracle Cloud (OPC).
Unattended guest installation.
Overhauled VM selector GUI (improved tools VM / global tools handling, new icons).
Added experimental audio support for video recording.
In addition, the following items were fixed and/or added:
VMM: fixed reason for recent Linux kernels on also recent CPU models warning about "XSAVE consistency problem".
GUI: Virtual Media Manager rework allowing to manage media attributes, like size, location, type and description.
GUI: Host-only Network Manager implemented to simplify managing corresponding networks and their attributes.
GUI: Snapshot Pane rework allowing to manage snapshot attributes, like name and description; reworked snapshot details which looks more clear, corresponds to VM Details pane and reflects current VM state difference according to last snapshot taken.
GUI: Audio settings extended with possibility to enable/disable audio input/output; corresponding changed were done to Audio and Video Capture settings pages; VM Devices menu and status-bar extended with corresponding actions and indicator as well.
GUI: improvements with accessibility support.
GUI: Fixed double mouse cursor when using mouse integration without Guest Additions, actually a Qt 5.6 bug fixed with QT 5.6.3.
Audio: implemented (optional) device enumeration support for audio backends.
Audio: implemented support for host device callbacks (e.g. when adding or removing an audio device).
Audio: HDA emulation now uses asynchronous data processing in separate threads.
Audio: implemented ability to enable or disable audio input / output on-the-fly.
Storage: implemented support for CUE/BIN images as CD/DVD media including multiple tracks.
Storage: implemented support for the controller memory buffer feature for NVMe.
Storage: first milestone of the I/O stack redesign landed.
E1000: Fix for Windows XP freeze when booting with unplugged cable.
NAT network: do not skip some port forwarding setup when multiple VMs are active.
Serial: fixed extremely rare misbehavior on VM poweroff.
EFI: better video mode handling, supporting custom video modes and easier configuration.
BIOS: properly report floppy logical sectors per track for unusual formats.
BIOS: update ATA disk parameter table vectors only if there is actually a corresponding ATA disk attached.
PXE: speed up booting by better handling pending packets when the link is not up yet.
VBoxManage: handle CPUID sub-leaf overrides better.
Windows Additions: fix several 3D related crashes.
Solaris hosts: allow increasing MTU size for host-only adapter to 9706 bytes to support jumbo frames.
Linux Additions: on systems using systemd, make sure that only the Guest Additions timesync service is active.
Many unlisted fixes and improvements.