How To: Install VirtualBox on Fedora 8 (Werewolf)

Updated January 9th, 2008

This is a tutorial on how to get VirtualBox up and running on Fedora 8. If you haven’t yet, add yourself as a “sudoer” by visiting the tutorial this page. Also, this tutorial is for the 32-Bit version of VirtualBox, so you’ll have to customize a little more to get the 64-bit version running (as pointed out in the comments). Everything in the “code” sections should be copy/pasted/typed into the terminal. Right, let’s get to it:

1.) Get the VirtualBox 1.5.4 package from the VirtualBox website for Fedora 8 and install it.

wget http://www.virtualbox.org/download/1.5.4/VirtualBox-1.5.4_27034_fedora8-1.i586.rpm && sudo rpm -ivh VirtualBox-1.5.4_27034_fedora8-1.i586.rpm

2.) Get the kernel-devel package:

sudo yum install make automake autoconf gcc kernel-devel

3.) Run the setup file for VirtualBox:

sudo /etc/init.d/vboxdrv setup

4.) Add yourself to the “vboxusers” group (don’t forget the “-” dash!):

su -
usermod -G vboxusers -a username

5.) Run, and enjoy!


I would recommend disabling compiz if you have it running for VirtualBox. I’ve noticed that it [i]really[/i] slows things down (especially in fullscreen mode).

6.) To Get USB Support:

1 – create a new group called “usb”;
2 – locate file usbfs: in my case is /sys/bus/usb/drivers (I suggest to find the file with a usb device inserted;
3 – modify file /etc/fstab inserting a line containing the right path and the number corresponding the “usb” group :
none /sys/bus/usb/drivers usbfs devgid=503,devmode=664 0 0
4 – command mount -a;
5 – start VB and try…;

Source: Fedora Forums

7.) To Properly Backup the VirtualBox Machine (.vdi):

Please refer to my other page here:

How To: Properly Backup a VirtualBox Machine (.VDI)

8.) To Get Sound Working:

Highlight your virtual machine and click on the “Settings” button. Click on the “Sound” category, and then check the “Enable Sound” option. In the drop-down box, select “PulseAudio”. You should now have sound.

9.) To enlarge an already created VDI or Disk Image:

I plan on making this a little neater, but for right now, I wanted to share the information that I found via the virtualbox forums. A gentleman by the nickname of “gushy” posted these instructions:

Original post is located in this thread. And, if your experience was anything like mine, your windows virtual machine will perform a disk check when rebooting for the first time on the larger disk.

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There's 36 Comments So Far

  • been
    November 20th, 2007 at 9:59 am

    not working here:

    [[email protected] ~]# sudo /etc/init.d/vboxdrv setup
    Stopping VirtualBox kernel module [ OK ]
    Recompiling VirtualBox kernel module [FAILED]
    (Look at /var/log/vbox-install.log to find out what went wrong) </cite)

    and the log:

    Makefile:68: *** Error: unable to find the sources of your current Linux kernel. Specify KERN_DIR= and run Make again.. Stop.

    how do i specify my kernel folder???

  • sendderek
    November 20th, 2007 at 10:56 am

    Sorry to hear that… everything I outlined worked for myself. I recognize the first error though. You get that if you don’t install the “kernel-devel” package, but if you’re replying to my tutorial, I understand that you’ve probably already tried to do that. Have you tried a restart? I don’t think it’s necessary, but it’s worth a shot.

    It looks like another gentleman was having an issue as well on the virtualbox.org forums. Here’s the link:

    I hope that helps!


    PS. One person said this about the issue:
    “I installed kernel and kernel source again, then it is working.”

  • Waves77
    November 25th, 2007 at 1:46 pm

    Thanks for the tutorial! Took me only a few minutes to get this up and running 😉

    Only problem I ran into was that you linked to the 32bit version. Virtualbox displays an error message about a different driver version, so that can be kind of confusing.

    Simple fix here:

  • sendderek
    November 25th, 2007 at 2:53 pm

    You’re welcome! I’m glad it worked for you.

    Thanks for posting a comment and letting myself and readers know about an issue AND giving a fix for it!

    I have updated the tutorial accordingly.

  • 0xception
    December 6th, 2007 at 4:12 am

    Thanks for the tutorial… I did run into a problem on my Fedora 8 install, I was wondering if you’ve run across this problem anywhere else; Basically my sound doesn’t work in the virtual machine. I’m using pulseaudio with the alsa plugin for pulseaudio and i’ve tried just switching back to alsa but that didn’t work either. on boot of the VM (windows in this case) i hear the startup sound for a brief (less then a sec) moment, same for closing down windows. i have the audio enabled in virtualbox and configured to alsa.. anyways i know your not a support forum or anything, just wondering if you’ve seen this before. otherwise i have a lot of digging around to do 🙁

  • 0xception
    December 6th, 2007 at 4:23 am

    … Might want to ignore that last post… Apparently i should always wait another 30 min after i think i’ve run out of things to test before posting for help, because theres always one last thing to try and that normally fixes it :(… well it’s not fixed, but the OSS drivers work fine w/ virtualbox, so maybe my fedora installation’s ALSA driver is messed up.

  • Anant
    December 26th, 2007 at 9:15 am

    I am getting the same error as been in his first post

  • Olov
    January 9th, 2008 at 5:09 pm

    Thank you for this post!
    Helped me get my v-box working 🙂
    You only updated one reference to 1.5.4…

    wget http://www.virtualbox.org/download/1.5.4/VirtualBox-1.5.4_27034_fedora8-1.i586.rpm && sudo rpm -ivh VirtualBox-1.5.2_25433_fedora7-1.i586.rpm

    should be:
    wget http://www.virtualbox.org/download/1.5.4/VirtualBox-1.5.4_27034_fedora8-1.i586.rpm&&amp; sudo rpm -ivh VirtualBox-1.5.4_27034_fedora8-1.i586.rpm

    thanks again!

  • sendderek
    January 9th, 2008 at 5:20 pm

    Thanks for pointing that out… I totally forgot about updating that part of the command! It has been fixed.

    I also added steps to increase the size of an already created virtual disk.


  • Dang Duong
    January 20th, 2008 at 8:39 am

    not working here:

    [[email protected] ~]# sudo /etc/init.d/vboxdrv setup
    Stopping VirtualBox kernel module [ OK ]
    Recompiling VirtualBox kernel module [FAILED]
    (Look at /var/log/vbox-install.log to find out what went wrong) </cite)

    and the log:

    Makefile:68: *** Error: unable to find the sources of your current Linux kernel. Specify KERN_DIR= and run Make again.. Stop.

    how do i specify my kernel folder???

    === please check version boot kernel and kernel-devel====

  • sendderek
    January 20th, 2008 at 11:23 am

    It looks like *been* had that same problem.

    I found two other people having the same problem, and both of their solutions was to uninstall and then re-install the kernel and kernel-devel packages. Take a look for yourself in any one of these links:


    I hope this helps.

  • groelofs
    January 29th, 2008 at 6:30 pm

    hi there, followed the howto, but running into a problem, i can run Virtualbox without issues on root, but with my user account i get this :

    [[email protected] ~]$ VirtualBox
    Cannot create/open directory ‘/tmp/.vbox-Gertjan-ipc/ipcd’
    Abnormal termination.

    Gertjan is added in the “vboxusers” Group

    what is going wrong here?

  • sendderek
    January 29th, 2008 at 10:59 pm

    What would happen if you tried to chmod that particular file?

    sudo -c 'chmod 777 /tmp/.vbox-Gertjan-ipc/ipcd'

    777 will completely open the file up to all access, so you may want to use it for testing and then change the permissions to 644 and see what happens.

  • groelofs
    January 30th, 2008 at 1:40 am

    no effect, same error

  • sendderek
    January 30th, 2008 at 10:39 am

    Try to open up permissions on the /tmp folder and see what happens. This is what my permissions look like for that tmp folder:

    Also, I noticed that your username has a capital letter in it. I didn’t think usernames were allowed to have capitals. Be sure you’ve added yourself to the vboxusers group with the correct spelling and without capitalization. Maybe that will help?

  • groelofs
    January 30th, 2008 at 12:48 pm

    permissions on /tmp folder are the same as yours, trying to make a new user and c if that helps in lower caps since fedora does look for lower caps difference : [[email protected] ~]# usermod -G vboxusers -a gertjan
    usermod: user gertjan does not exist

  • sendderek
    January 30th, 2008 at 1:58 pm

    I’m honestly not sure what to tell you. You may want to check on the VirtualBox forums and see if they can help.


  • groelofs
    January 30th, 2008 at 6:34 pm

    found the problem, apparently it makes a difference if the login has a capital in it or not, i created another login with exactly the same info and permission, only in lower caps. all works like a charm now.

    guess being an old geezer starting a sentence or a single word with a capital doesn’t pay off in the end. LOL

  • groelofs
    January 30th, 2008 at 6:38 pm

    Btw, thanks for the How-to and help m8.

  • sendderek
    January 30th, 2008 at 6:57 pm

    Hey, you’re welcome! I’m glad it turned out for you!

  • Gee
    February 1st, 2008 at 3:49 pm

    Great Guide!

    On a fresh Fedora 8 install I had to install:


    Another option for users, who don’t want to add themselves as sudoers, is the su -c “command”

    su -c “yum install libSDL-1.2.so.0”

    And just type in the “root” password.

  • maxim
    February 23rd, 2008 at 9:08 am

    i have problem i installed it and work and installed centos as virtual but centos can’t ping fedora and vise verca
    fedora ip is
    From icmp_seq=2 Destination Host Unreachable

  • sendderek
    February 23rd, 2008 at 10:22 am

    Sorry to hear that.

    All I can really suggest is that you double-check your settings in the VirtualBox settings manager. If you still don’t find any fault, report to the VirtualBox forums for help. I just don’t know much about the subject when dealing with VirtualBox and networking between host and guest. Sorry.

  • maxim
    February 23rd, 2008 at 12:15 pm

    i solved it thanks for ur replay i made bridge and used host interface

  • dubb
    February 26th, 2008 at 2:10 am

    what happens if i forgot to set up sudo. and install it as root?

  • sendderek
    February 26th, 2008 at 9:33 am

    Installing it using “sudo” is the same thing as installing it using “su -“. You have nothing to worry about!

  • cronaldo
    March 7th, 2008 at 6:48 pm

    thanks for the tutorial!

    however, the virtualbox kernel module was not recompiling…

    Then I upgraded my kernel to the latest version, performed your instructions again, and it worked perfectly.


  • Chris
    March 8th, 2008 at 4:14 am

    Great how to. Unfortunately, I learnt these steps the hard way, but you list everything I figured out myself. Well done.

    The only issue I’ve had that few tutorials cover are the networking problems. For some reason, it’s a common problem for the guest OS to not have any internet connection. My current setup’s not perfect, but I finally figured out how to enable the internet connection by giving my guest OS the same MAC address as the host.

    Another issue I’ve had is VB does a poor job of capturing certain key presses. For instance, pressing the Windows key won’t activate the start menu in a Windows guest OS.

  • Roy
    March 15th, 2008 at 12:51 pm

    Great tutorial.

    please add that for 64bits Fedora8 you need a different version of Virtualbox.

    I used VirtualBox-1.5.6_28266_fedora8-1.x86_64.rpm

  • J2
    April 25th, 2008 at 11:59 pm

    I followed all the steps and it will only let me run the program as root…When I try as a user it poops on me…

    [[email protected] ~]$ VirtualBox
    Cannot create/open directory ‘/tmp/.vbox-J2-ipc/ipcd’
    Abnormal termination.

    any thoughts?

    uname -a
    Linux localhost.localdomain #1 SMP Sat Mar 29 09:15:49 EDT 2008 x86_64 x86_64 x86_64 GNU/Linux

  • Askar Khan
    August 16th, 2008 at 11:31 am

    Nice howto, it took me only few minutes to install virtualbox on Fedora 9 and running M$ XP as guest OS by following this nice and clean howto.

  • linuxNoob
    September 4th, 2008 at 6:05 am

    Thanx for the nice Tutorial…M getting teh same error as “been”
    I ‘ve tried googling and found that uninstalling and reinstalling works like a charm. Can nyone please tell me how to uninstall and reinstall the kernel-devel and kernel -source or whatever we have to uninst and reinst..m running FC9 on 32bit machine and on fluxbox WM. Plz help me .Thanks in apprcn.

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