Centos Virtualbox Install Guest Additions

admin14 April 2024Last Update :

Understanding VirtualBox Guest Additions

VirtualBox Guest Additions are a suite of software tools that enhance the performance and usability of guest operating systems running inside VirtualBox. These tools provide features such as improved video support, seamless mouse integration, shared clipboard, drag and drop functionality, and automated logins. Installing Guest Additions is essential for an optimal user experience when working with virtual machines (VMs).

Preparing CentOS for Guest Additions Installation

Before installing Guest Additions on a CentOS VM, it’s important to prepare the system. This involves updating the system and installing required packages.

  • Update the system:
    yum update
  • Install kernel headers and development tools:
    yum install kernel-devel kernel-headers gcc make perl

These commands ensure that your CentOS system has the latest updates and the necessary building blocks to compile and install Guest Additions.

Mounting the VirtualBox Guest Additions ISO

The next step is to mount the Guest Additions ISO file onto the CentOS VM. This can be done through the VirtualBox interface by selecting ‘Devices’ > ‘Insert Guest Additions CD image…’ from the VM’s menu bar.

Manual Mounting via Command Line

If you prefer using the command line or need to automate the process, you can manually mount the ISO:

mkdir /mnt/cdrom
mount /dev/cdrom /mnt/cdrom

This creates a mount point and mounts the ISO to it, allowing access to its contents.

Installing VirtualBox Guest Additions on CentOS

With the ISO mounted, navigate to the mount directory and execute the VBoxLinuxAdditions.run script:

cd /mnt/cdrom

The script will compile and install Guest Additions. Once completed, reboot the VM to apply changes:


Troubleshooting Common Installation Issues

Sometimes, the installation may encounter issues due to missing dependencies or kernel mismatches. Here are some common problems and their solutions:

  • Missing dependencies: Ensure all prerequisite packages are installed.
  • Kernel version mismatch: Update the kernel and reinstall kernel headers and development tools.
  • Building the main Guest Additions module fails: Check the logs at /var/log/VBoxGuestAdditions.log for specific error messages.

Verifying Guest Additions Installation

To confirm that Guest Additions have been successfully installed, check the running modules:

lsmod | grep vboxguest

You should see the ‘vboxguest’ module listed. Additionally, test features like shared clipboard or seamless mouse integration to verify functionality.

Configuring Shared Folders with Guest Additions

One of the benefits of Guest Additions is the ability to share folders between the host and guest OS. To set up a shared folder, use the VirtualBox settings for the VM or the command line:

VBoxManage sharedfolder add "VM name" --name "sharename" --hostpath "/path/to/host/folder"

Then, mount the shared folder within CentOS:

mkdir /mnt/shared
mount -t vboxsf sharename /mnt/shared

The shared folder is now accessible at /mnt/shared.

Enhancing CentOS Desktop Experience with Guest Additions

For CentOS desktop users, Guest Additions improve the graphical environment by providing better screen resolutions and automatic resizing. The enhanced video driver included in Guest Additions needs to be enabled after installation for these features to work correctly.

Automating Guest Additions Installation

In environments where multiple CentOS VMs are deployed, automating the installation of Guest Additions can save time. Scripts or configuration management tools like Ansible can be used to streamline this process.

FAQ Section

What are the prerequisites for installing VirtualBox Guest Additions on CentOS?

The prerequisites include having the latest system updates, kernel headers, development tools, and GCC compiler installed on your CentOS VM.

How do I know if VirtualBox Guest Additions are installed correctly?

Check for the presence of the ‘vboxguest’ module using lsmod, and try out features like shared clipboard or seamless mouse integration.

Can I use Guest Additions with CentOS minimal installation?

Yes, but you’ll need to install additional packages like kernel headers and development tools that aren’t included in the minimal installation.

Why isn’t my shared folder showing up in CentOS after adding it in VirtualBox?

Ensure that you’ve mounted the shared folder within CentOS and that the ‘vboxsf’ module is loaded. Also, check the permissions of the shared folder.

Do I need to reinstall Guest Additions after updating CentOS?

It’s recommended to reinstall Guest Additions after a kernel update to ensure compatibility with the new kernel version.


  • VirtualBox Manual – Guest Additions: https://www.virtualbox.org/manual/ch04.html
  • CentOS Documentation: https://docs.centos.org/
  • VirtualBox Downloads (for Guest Additions ISO): https://www.virtualbox.org/wiki/Downloads
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