[vbox-dev] Co-existence of distribution-installed Guest Additions and Oracle-provided ones

Michael Thayer michael.thayer at oracle.com
Wed Jun 14 12:52:14 GMT 2017

Hello Gianfranco,

14.06.2017 14:37, Gianfranco Costamagna wrote:
>> And here we come back to the original problem.  If it were just a case
>> of Debian, but our installer is designed to work with any distribution,
>> and it becomes a case of knowing the magical incantations for each,
>> rather than just executing a script which contains "apt-get remove
>> virtualbox-guest".  What problems do you see with that?
> you need to call some apt remove --purge virtualbox-guest-utils virtualbox-guest-dkms virtualbox-guest-x11
> or similar.
> But I would say this is hacky and risky, maybe just printing the content of such
> file (in case it exists) and tell the user to run it might be better
> "hello, we detected you might already have a virtualbox guest foo installed"
> please try to remove it from your system before installing the oracle provided one
> with the following command
> `cat file`
> and try again.
> the same can be done from my side
> does this sound good?

That is roughly what we had until recently, minus printing the exact
command.  Seamlessly switching would be a big usability plus though.  My
original idea was to make it possible to have two versions (distribution
and ours) installed at once, and set symbolic links in /usr/bin and
places to make the right one active.  Hans sensibly pointed out that
this is likely to be tricky and error-prone, and this was his
alternative suggestion.  Any thoughts?  So far, given that no one has
taken this up yet, there is still time to improve.

Michael Thayer | VirtualBox engineer
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