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Debian "Wheezy" guest on Windows 8.1 host using VirtualBox

This post is about using Oracle VirtualBox to install a Debian 7.2 x86_64 guest virtual machine on Windows 8.1 host.

Install VirtualBox

  1. Download the latest VirtualBox installer from Make sure you get the 64-bit version. That was VirtualBox-4.3.2-90405-Win.exe at the time of writing.
  2. Run the installer and follow the instructions on the screen. Leave the default options as they are. The installation should complete without any issues.
  3. Download the Oracle VM VirtualBox Extension Pack from
  4. Double click the downloaded .vbox-extpack file to install the extensions.
  5. Go to File > Preferences > Extensions. You should see the Oracle VM VirtualBox Extension Pack listed under Extension Packages.


Create virtual machine

  1. Start VirtualBox
  2. Select Machine > New from the menu - Name: Debian-7.2-x64
  3. Type: Linux
  4. Version: Debian (64 bit)
  5. Click Next

NOTE: If the Debian (64 bit) choice is not available, make sure Intel Virtualization Technology is enabled in the host UEFI / BIOS. 3. Memory size - Memory size: 4096 MB - Click Next 4. Hard drive - Choose Create a virtual hard drive now - Click Create - Choose VDI (VirtualBox Disk Image) - Click Create - File allocation and size - Select a path for the virtual disk image - Select 100 GB for size - Click Create

It takes a few minutes to create the virtual disk image, but eventually you will see the image in the VirtualBox Manager. We are ready to install Debian now.

create-virtual-machine create-virtual-machine-memory-size create-virtual-machine-hard-drive create-virtual-hard-drive-creating-fixed-medium-storage-unit oracle-vm-virtualbox-manager

Configure Display

In VirtualBox Manager:

  1. Select Debian-7.2-x64 > Settings
  2. Select Display > Video
  3. Bump up the video memory to 128 MB.
  4. Do not check Enable 3D Acceleration. We will enable 3D Acceleration later.

no images were found

Mount Debian Boot CD

  1. Download the Debian 7.2 x64 ISO image from the network install page on the Debian web site. Make sure you get the amd64 image.
  2. Open VirtualBox Manager
  3. Select Debian-7.2-x64 > Settings
  4. Select Storage > Controller IDE > Empty
  5. Click on the little CD icon
  6. Find and select the Debian ISO (debian-7.2.0-amd64-netinst.iso) that you downloaded in step 1.
  7. Click OK

oracle-vm-virtualbox-manager-machine-settings debian-7-2-x64-storage-settings

Start the virtual machine

  1. Open VirtualBox Manager
  2. Start the Debian-7.2-x64 machine
  3. Press right CTRL+R to reset the machine. You should see the Debian Installer boot menu.

oracle-vm-virtualbox-manager-start debian-7-2-x64-debian-installer-boot-menu

Install Debian

In the Debian Install boot menu:

  1. Select Graphical Install
  2. Follow the installer instructions and configure Debian just as you would do on a physical machine. You should be able to install without any problems.

Enable 3D Acceleration

Install Guest Additions for VirtualBox

  1. Start the Debian-7.2-x64 virtual machine
  2. Login into Debian
  3. Select Insert Guest Additions CD image… from the VirtualBox Devices menu. Do not run it!
  4. Open Root Terminal

Install Module Assistant, so you can build kernel modules.

apt-get install module-assistant

Let Module Assistant prepare the system.

m-a prepare

Install Guest Additions

sh /media/cdrom/

Enable 3D Acceleration

  1. Shutdown the Debian-7.2-x64 virtual machine
  2. Open VirtualBox Manager - Select Debian-7.2-x64 > Settings
  3. Select Display > Video
  4. Check Enable 3D Acceleration
  5. Start the Debian-7.2-x64 virtual machine


If the installation does not start or hangs, try booting using Advanced Options > Expert Install. That will give you more information about what is wrong with the installation.


This kernel requires an x86_64 CPU, but only detected an i686 CPU …


How to fix
  • Make sure Intel Virtualization Technology is ON in the host UEFI / BIOS.
  • Make sure the VirtualBox machine version is Debian (64 bit).
  • Make sure Windows Hyper-V services are not running.