Beta or prerelease software is not intended for inexperienced users, as the software may contain bugs or potentially damage your system. We strongly recommend that users exercise caution and save all mission-critical data before installing and/or using this software.
VirtualBox for Mac is the only free and easy solution that allows you to create and run virtual machines with all major operating systems. Although being free and easy to use are definite advantages, VirtualBox for Mac is not as feature-rich as the commercial competition and does not support as many operating systems -- namely 64-bit ones.
Easy to use: VirtualBox for Mac walks you through the process of creating, installing, and configuring a virtual machine. Although the process might be a bit overwhelming if you're new to this, the software comes with a manual that will most likely answer all of your questions.
Shared clipboard and drag and drop: Sharing information between the host and the virtual operating systems can be very fluid and easy, thanks to the ability to share the clipboard's contents and to drag files into the virtual machine. In the settings, you can enable those features and choose whether the clipboard sharing should work only from one OS to the other or in both directions.
Snapshots: Once you configure your virtual machine, you can permanently save the machine's state by creating a snapshot of it. If at any point in time you want to come back to that perfect state, you can do so by restoring the snapshot.
Only 32-bit support: Using the software, you can only run 32-bit versions of operating systems. If you need to use a 64-bit version, like the more recent releases of Mac OS X, you should look into another virtualization app, such as VMware Fusion or Parallels Desktop.
VirtualBox for Mac is perfect for you, if you're often required to test software and websites on different operating systems. Even though the software is not as feature-rich when compared to the competition, we'd still recommend that you try it, since it is free and might potentially meet all of your needs.
VirtualBox is a family of powerful x86 virtualization products for enterprise as well as home use. Not only is VirtualBox an extremely feature rich, high performance product for enterprise customers, it is also the only professional solution that is freely available as Open Source Software under the terms of the GNU General Public License (GPL). VirtualBox runs on Mac OS X, Windows and Linux and supports a large number of guest operating systems including but not limited to Windows (NT 4.0, 2000, XP, Server 2003, Vista), DOS/Windows 3.x, Linux (2.4 and 2.6), and OpenBSD. VirtualBox is being actively developed with frequent releases and has an ever growing list of features, supported guest operating systems and platforms it runs on. VirtualBox is a community effort backed by a dedicated company: everyone is encouraged to contribute while innotek ensures the product always meets professional quality criteria.
May 30, 2013
Version: VirtualBox 4.2.12
Runs the software I have tried to run Doesn't require an install of Windows Uses WIn XP (a stable version of Windows)
Screen is SMALL!
While this was useful for loading and running some Windows software on my Mac, the screen display for the Windows VM is so small that I have to strain to read it. I have not been able to find a way to make the screen bigger.
September 06, 2012
Version: VirtualBox 4.2rc2
It's free. It works. "Seamless" windows. Resizable displays.
OMG, you may have to read the manual to install it.
I have not used other VM software, so I can't compare. I occasionally need to fire up Windows to see what my Windows-user students see. I can now do this on one machine. Be sure to install the "Guest Additions" for easier and richer display options. Seamless view is good. Resizable display size is great. I prefer to minimize it on the dock when not needed, versus seamless view.
August 16, 2012
Version: VirtualBox 4.2.0b1
Easy install, it performs well what is supposed to do, the road to many windows-only apps. The right tool (I'm looking forward when it will be directly implemented in OSX, since is a great utility)
Some minor hassle in connecting to external media such as smartphones (OSX is faster in getting the "new" interface - after all the host system relay on OSX for external world). It would be great if given tools for "older" systems too, say Amiga, Mac OS Classic, Commodore VIC64, Spectre... for IT archaeology and recover of older documents (more than 10 years ago...)
Better than celebrated (and not free) emulators. And it's free, well supported and very reliable. What can you expect more?
April 02, 2012
Version: VirtualBox 4.1.12
Lets you install a lot of OS's small in size compare to others
On Lion for me it seems to keep my system slow and sluggish after I quit the app. I have to reboot after ever use to get Lion running smooth again. Don't no what going on maybe its not releasing the memory.
Great to have when you need to test out a new beta version of an OS and its free.