Ticket #5810 (closed enhancement: fixed)

Opened 8 years ago

Last modified 5 weeks ago

Feature Request: (Automatic) Unattended Guest OS Install (aka Easy Install) -> fixed in 5.2

Reported by: Technologov Owned by:
Priority: critical Component: other
Version: VirtualBox 3.1.2 Keywords:
Cc: Guest type: other
Host type: other

Description (last modified by michael) (diff)

One great feature still lacking in VBox is the ability to do automatic guest OS installation, similar to VMware's "Easy Install" (Workstation 6.5 and 7).

This will help both beginner users alike -and- Vbox QA effort, and will save time for advanced users.

It consists of several steps:

-Detecting unknown ISO file. This can be done by MD5sum of the first 5MB of the CD-ROM ISO, so the process becomes near instant. We must have a databse of MD5sums of standard ISOs.

-Loop mounting of media (Virtual Floppy) to put scripts into... (I don't know how do it on Windows host, without starting a VM)

-Putting data into it (Unattended scripts). I know a bit about unattended of Windows NT 5.x line of guest OSes.


-Technologov, 20.12.2009.

Change History

comment:1 Changed 7 years ago by Technologov

A proposed solution to the loop-mount problem by Fernando Cassia:

Maybe it´s a matter of getting in touch with these guys?

"You can use and redistribute the utilities and source code as you like, but remember to link back to this site or my e-mail adress and always attach any following text file when you redistribute the utilities"

"ImDisk is a virtual disk driver for Windows NT/2000/XP/2003/Vista/2008. It can create virtual hard disk, floppy or CD/DVD drives using image files or system memory. The install package installs a console-mode control program called imdisk.exe and a Control Panel applet."

Source code

Source code for all of ImDisk, including a server-part for *nix like systems, is available as a 7-zip compressed file here (94 KB). The Windows parts of the source code can be built in the Windows 2000 build environemt in the latest WDK and the *nix parts can be built with gcc. If you want to call functions for creating/removing/querying virtual disks from your own program you can #include the file inc\imdisk.h in your C/C++ source files and link the cpl\i386\imdisk.lib library. If you would like information about how to write compatible server-end software you can take a look at the I/O packet structures in inc\imdproxy.h.


I have received some e-mails with questions wether or not it is okay to include this driver in a commercial product. The answer is yes, just like all other tools I publish here. However, note that a few lines of code are under the GNU GPL license, this is basically the parts related to floppy emulation. Some of the driver code is also ported to Windows NT from the FreeBSD 'md' driver.


comment:2 Changed 7 years ago by mhanor

This is hardly a critical issue.

comment:3 Changed 7 years ago by Technologov

mhanor: This is *very* important feature to have, as it saves tons of hours for both beginners and advanced users alike.


comment:4 Changed 7 years ago by Technologov

I have opened a related [feature-request] Floppy: Create Virtual FAT images from host's filesystem, Wish #7836


comment:5 Changed 7 years ago by Technologov

I have opened a related [feature-request] Direct Linux Boot, Wish #8401


comment:6 Changed 5 weeks ago by michael

  • Status changed from new to closed
  • Resolution set to fixed
  • Description modified (diff)
  • Summary changed from Feature Request: (Automatic) Unattended Guest OS Install (aka Easy Install) to Feature Request: (Automatic) Unattended Guest OS Install (aka Easy Install) -> fixed in 5.2
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