How to Share Files between VirtualBox Guest and Host.

Last updated on June 20th, 2019

This tutorial contains instructions on how to share files in VirtualBox between the Host and the Guest machines. Once you enable file sharing in VirtualBox you will be able to copy/paste/move files from the VirtualBox Guest OS to the Host OS and vice versa.

Unlike VMWare and Hyper-V, in VirtualBox default setup, the virtual machine (Guest OS) doesn't have access to files at the host computer (Host OS) and you have to perform a few steps to enable the folder/file sharing.

How to Enable File sharing in VirtualBox.

Step 1. Install Guest Additions on the Guest machine.
Step 2. Configure File Sharing on VirtualBox.

Step 1. Install Guest Additions on the Guest machine.

1. Start the Virtuabox Guest Machine (OS).
2. From Oracle's VM VirtualBox main menu, select Devices > Install Guest Additions *

install guest additions virtualbox

* Note: If the setup program doesn't start automatically:

a. Open Windows Explorer.
b. Double click at the "CD Drive (X:) VirtualBox Guest additions" to explore its contents.

install-virtualbox-guest-additions

c. Right click at "VBoxWindowsAdditions" application and from the pop-up menu, choose "Run as administrator".

guest additions install

3. Press Next and then follow the on screen instructions to complete the Guest Additions installation.

virtualbox guest additions install

4. When the setup is completed, choose Finish and restart the Virtuabox guest machine.

virtualbox guest additions install finish

Step 2. Setup File Sharing on VirtualBox Guest Machine.

1. From VirtualBox menu click Devices and choose Shared Folders -> Shared Folder Settings.

How to Share Files between VirtualBox Guest and Host OS

2. Click the Add new shared folder image icon.

file sharing virtualbox

3. Click the drop-down arrow and select Other.

setup folder sharing virtualbox

4. Locate and highlight (from the Host OS) the folder that you want to share between the VirtualBox Guest machine and the Host and click Select Folder. *

* Note: To make your life easier, create a new folder for the file sharing, on the Host OS and give it with a recognizable name. (e.g. "Public")

virtualbox file share

5. Now, in the 'Add Share' options, type a name (if you want) at the 'Folder Name box, click the Auto Mount and the Make Permanent checkboxes and click OK twice to close the Shared Folder Settings.

add shared folder virtualbox

6. You 're done! To access the shared folder from the Guest OS, open Windows Explorer and under the 'Network locations' you should see a new network drive that corresponds to the shared folder on the Host OS.

virtualbox enable file sharing

That's it! Let me know if this guide has helped you by leaving your comment about your experience. Please like and share this guide to help others.

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