Arch Linux VirtualBox Guest

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Revision as of 23:05, 3 October 2011 by Karol (talk | contribs) (Autostart the VBoxGuestAdditions: typo)
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Installing Arch under VirtualBox is straightforward, and additions should be installed through pacman (not through "Install Guest Additions" in VirtualBox, or a mounted ISO.) Follow these instructions after doing a basic install of the X-window system found on the Beginners' Guide.

Install the required package:

# pacman -Syu virtualbox-archlinux-additions

Load vbox modules:

# modprobe -a vboxguest vboxsf vboxvideo

Auto-start modules

To autostart these modules each time you boot, you can either

  • 1) Add the three modules above to the MODULES array in /etc/rc.conf.
MODULES(... vboxguest vboxsf vboxvideo)


  • 2) Add rc.vboxadd to the DAEMONS array. This daemon probes the above listed modules.
DAEMONS(... rc.vboxadd)

Enable VboxClient-all:

The VBoxClient contain these services(/usr/bin/VBoxClient-all) (copy/paste...) :

 --clipboard        start the shared clipboard service
 --display          start the display management service
 --checkhostversion start the host version notifier service
 --seamless         start the seamless windows service

So you can Enable VBoxClient-all to start all these services.

If you are running something that launches /etc/xdg/autostart/vboxclient.desktop, such as GNOME, then you should be ready to go. If you use .xinitrc to launch things instead, you must add

VBoxClient-all &

to your .xinitrc before launching your WM.

You should now be all set, and all guest additions should work properly.

Bidirectional Copy & Paste for Virtualbox

If the copy and paste between the VirtualBox host and guest is still not working after the steps above you can follow this instructions.

Check clipboard settings

First of all check that you enabled the bidirectional clipboard. To do so edit your VirtualBox guest and check if the option bidirectional is set in General -> Advanced for the shared clipboard.

Still not working after a restart of the guest? Go on here.

Install DKMS

Install dkms (Dynamic Kernel Module Support) to be able to maintain your guest kernel with kernel modules.

Dkms is not available through pacman so you can either download it from AUR and compile it yourself or get it via yaourt

# yaourt -S dkms

Make sure you have installed DKMS on your guest before adding the VBoxGuestAdditon otherwise you have to recreate the guest kernel modules again when the guest kernel is updated.

Get the VBoxGuestAdditions

Download the VBoxGuestAdditions.iso ISO for your Virtualbox Version at and add it as a virtual CD-ROM drive in your virtualbox guest.

Start the guest system, mount the CD and change to the directory of the CD. Now you can execute the folloing line as root or sudo to compile the virtualbox addition modules.

# sh ./

Autostart the VBoxGuestAdditions

If you want to start the clipboard always when the virtual guest starts add the following to the guest /etc/rc.conf to the daemons.

# DAEMONS=(... dkms_autoinstaller ...)

Last but not least you should reboot you VirtualBox guest to have copy and paste working in both directions.

For more information or features check out the VirtualBox User Manual at