How to Install Windows XP in Virtual Box

Today we will be reviewing how to install Windows XP on Ubuntu. When I first transitioned I know having Windows around provided a bit of comfort. Although I haven’t found a need to use it in a while, you might find this useful. First you need a few things.

A brief review.  Although it ran just fine I did find a few annoyances.

  • USB devices will not be recognized (looking for fix that works on Ubuntu 8.10)
  • When USB devices work, ipods will still not work
  • difficult to find shared folder at first and very slow (I provide a tip for this at the end)

Other than this it ran perfectly!  Hope this helps.


1. A Windows XP installation disk

2. Download Virtual box from here or here
2a. I downloaded i386 for ubuntu 8.10 if your machine is 64 bit then choose AMD64
2c. As soon as you download you should get the option to
” Install with Gdebi Package Installer”. Click ok and install.

First Steps (the easy part)

  1. Now go to Applications < system tools < Sunx VM Virtual Box. Virtual Box should open
  2. Click on New
  3. A new window pops up, click on Next.  Type in Windows XP in the Name window. Under Os type make sure it says Microsoft Windows for Operating System and Windows XP for Version. Click Next.
  4. Now you are in a window where you need to configure memory. Set it to the amount of ram you would like to set aside for Windows XP when it runs.  I set it to 500mb. Click Next
  5. Create a new virtual hard drive – Okay the window you are currently in should say “virtual hard disk” on top.  Click on new, next, then in the next window click on fixed size storage.  This will limit how much storage Windows XP will use.  I set it to 10 gigabytes.
  6. Go through the rest of the setup

Configure Settings before Installing Windows XP

  1. Create a new folder on your desktop. Name it “shared”. You will need this later.
  2. Go back to virtual box and click on settings
  3. Click on CD/DVD-ROM on the left list and check off “Mount CD/DVD Drive”
  4. Go to Audio on the left list and check off  “Enable Audio”
  5. Go to Serial Ports on the left list and click on “Enable Serial Ports”
  6. Go to USB and check off “Enable USB Controller”
  7. Go to Shared Folders.  Click on the little blue folder all the way to the right with the plus sign.  Click on the drop down menu for folder path, and pick “other…” now navigate to your desktop and add the “shared” folder we made at the beginning.
  8. Click on OK (bottom right of the settings window). Now to install Windows.

Install Windows XP

  1. Insert your xp install cd
  2. click on start
  3. follow the normal install process
  4. You’re done!

Helpful Tips (will finish later.. can’t find usb fix)

Stuck in Virtual Box Window?

  1. Move your cursor as far to the bottom right as you can
  2. press ctrl+ –> (the right arrow) at the same time

Adding a faster Shared folder to Desktop

  1. Go to My computer
  2. Search for “shared” or whatever you  named your shared folder
  3. look for a folder named \\VBOXSVR\shared
  4. Righ click, choose “Map Network Drive…”
  5. Click on Finish
  6. Make a Shortcut to this new Drive on your Desktop. Anything you put in here you can open in ubuntu or in Windows xp.

Install Guest Additions (allows you to move between ubuntu and windows xp as if it was a normal program.  No more right arrow + ctrl).

  1. Click on Devices at the top of the window running Windows XP
  2. At the bottom it should say, “Install Guest Additions”.  Click on it.
  3. The rest of the process should be self explanatory (older versions were a bit difficult)

USB Support (workign on it)


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