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#1 2022-04-18 17:21:40

Dodging A Bullet
From: Seat: seat0; vc7
Registered: 2015-09-29
Posts: 978

[How To] VirtualBox in Bunsen Beryllium (Debian 11). Debian repos.

We'll be doing this without 3rd party repos.

Yes, VirtualBox is still available from Debian, but it's a little more involved than a simple apt-get since it's not available in testing or stable directly owing to problems backporting security fixes to older versions the way Debian usually operate.  Users of Buster (Lithium) can adapt this, users of Sid can simply install using apt-get, no extra repos.

We must enable the fasttrack repo, which will also keep VirtualBox more current than it ever was from the main repos, though sometimes a little behind Oracle even so.

Setting up VitualBox on the host.

We'll need the fasttrack keyring:

sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get upgrade
sudo apt-get install fasttrack-archive-keyring

Fasttrack requires backports also, so enable that:

echo "deb bullseye-backports main contrib non-free" | sudo tee /etc/apt/sources.list.d/debian-bullseye-backports.list

Fastrack is two lines:

echo "deb bullseye-fasttrack main contrib non-free" | sudo tee /etc/apt/sources.list.d/debian-bullseye-fasttrack.list

Note the -a to append below.

echo "deb bullseye-backports-staging main contrib non-free" | sudo tee -a /etc/apt/sources.list.d/debian-bullseye-fasttrack.list

Our sources have now changed, so:

sudo apt-get update

Install the main application, I'd recommend the extension pack too, which is non-free software but adds USB 2 & 3 capabilities to VMs & a number of other handy features.

sudo apt-get install virtualbox virtualbox-ext-pack

You'll need to accept the extension pack licence during the install process if you install it.

We'll want the guest additions iso especially for Windows in a VM, but also any Linux distro that doesn't keep additions in their repoos.
Make sure to get the one from fasttrack & not stable, or VirtualBox will complain about old additions when used.

sudo apt-get install virtualbox-guest-additions-iso -t bullseye-fasttrack

We've been added to the vboxusers group, & some features won't work till we've logged out & back in, so logout & back in, or reboot.

Now we're nearly set, in fact VirtualBox is installed & working, but the default settings on the user interface are messed up with a dark theme set, so let's fix that too.

cp /usr/share/applications/virtualbox.desktop ~/.local/share/applications/

Substitute a different editor below if you like.

nano ~/.local/share/applications/virtualbox.desktop

We want to change:

Exec=VirtualBox %U


Exec=VirtualBox --style Fusion %U

Now it'll at least be readable when started from the menu (It puts itself under Applications > System), from a terminal you can also do:

VirtualBox --style Fusion &

Optionally to have one dark style available

sudo apt-get install adwaita-qt

After which you can replace Fusion above with Adwaita-Dark for a dark mode.

All that's left is then creating a VM & installing a guest OS.

Installing Guest additions on a Bunsen/Debian guest.

To install Guest Additions in a VM running Beryllium or Bullseye you have a choice:

Either also add the repos as above inside the guest and then also in the guest:

sudo apt-get install virtualbox-guest-x11 virtualbox-guest-dkms

Insert the additions iso from the VirtualBox Devices menu on the host & then inside the guest:
install some prequequiites.

sudo apt-get install build-essential dkms linux-headers-$(uname -r)

Install the additions themselves

cd /media/cdrom0
sudo sh ./

I usually reboot guests after additions installs, things can be a bit flaky if you don't.

That's pretty much it. Tweak things like clipboard sharing etc. to suit.

The discussion in Beryllium theming was getting a bit disjointed, so I thought I'd put the info I have all in one place.

Last edited by Bearded_Blunder (2022-04-21 00:50:49)

Blessed is he who expecteth nothing, for he shall not be disappointed...
If there's an obscure or silly way to break it, but you don't know what.. Just ask me


#2 2022-04-19 05:37:43

From: Nagoya, Japan
Registered: 2015-09-09
Posts: 8,959

Re: [How To] VirtualBox in Bunsen Beryllium (Debian 11). Debian repos.

Many thanks for this B_B!
It will be a good resource to have on the forum. cool

...elevator in the Brain Hotel, broken down but just as well...
( a boring Japan blog (currently paused), idle Twitterings and GitStuff )

Introduction to the Bunsenlabs Lithium Desktop


#3 2022-04-19 23:40:09

Registered: 2018-05-22
Posts: 871

Re: [How To] VirtualBox in Bunsen Beryllium (Debian 11). Debian repos.

Indeed! Really good info! The Fast Track repo's are pretty cool to just have Virtualbox if nothing else. I've been using the oracle edition for a while now but look forward to giving this a go proper.


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