How to install Windows 8 Release Preview using Oracle Virtual Box
With the advent of desktop virtualization becoming more mainstream, it gives the computer enthusiasts and IT professional to test different operating systems easily. One product that is used quite often is Oracles Virtual Box. Virtual box is an open source type 2 hyper-visor that uses the host’s resources to run a virtual machine in an isolated environment. This gives the ability to test beta and release candidate operating systems without impacting your production workstation.
I am going to walk through how to install Windows 8 x86-64 Release candidate on to a virtual box virtual machine. I am using virtual box version 4.1.18 which is latest available currently which is running on Windows 7 x64 Ultimate sp1. The hardware specs are:
1) Intel i7 2600k
2) Gigabyte z68x-ud3h-b3 motherboard
3) 8 GB of Mushkin 1333 ram
Virtual box will run on most modern hardware but performance will be best if the CPU and motherboard support hardware-assisted virtualization. AMD uses AMD-V which is available in just every modern AMD processor in the last few years and INTEL uses VT-x which was added with the release of the core 2 duo and is mostly available on higher end Intel CPU’s. Without hardware assistance, virtual box will run only in software mode and can only support 32 bit virtual machines. Having the hardware assistance will allow 64 bit guests to be created and supported.
The below figure shows what the virtual box manager looks like.
As you can see I have a number of different virtual machines I can start which is the best part of having a desktop virtualization solution. So what we are going to do is create a virtual machine using the wizard which is launched by clicking the new machine icon on the manager.
The new virtual machine wizard will walk you through the creation of a simple virtual machine.