[vbox-dev] [PROPOSAL] Userdata Interface

Alex Crawford alex.crawford at coreos.com
Thu Sep 15 02:19:34 GMT 2016

I've been kicking around the idea of adding another request type to
VMMDev that exposes an opaque chunk of data provided by the user. This
is intended to allow users to pass configuration data to guests which
support reading from this interface.

At CoreOS, we are working on a project called Ignition [1], which
handles machine provisioning tasks (setting up filesystems, creating
users, enabling services, etc.). In order to support VirtualBox, we need
a way for users to pass their Ignition config to the CoreOS Linux guest
(ideally via the hypervisor). We do this via GuestVariables on VMware
and the firmware configuration device on QEMU. I couldn't find anything
in VirtualBox which would allow us similar functionality.

I'd like to add an extra request handler to expose just this piece of
information. I had considered making a much more general mechanism,
similar to GuestVariables, but I'd prefer to keep things simple and get
the developers' feedback before I started work. What do you all think?


[1]: https://coreos.com/ignition
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