How to Install Windows 7 on Ubuntu Using VirtualBox

Do you want to install Windows 7 inside Ubuntu? If your answer is yes, then you will need virtualization software like VMWare Workstation or Sun Virtualbox to setup an operating system (guest OS) inside an operating system (host OS). The process sounds more complicated than it really is so don't worry.

If you are ready, here's a step-by-step instruction on how to install Windows 7 (guest) inside Ubuntu (host). But first, some requirements:

Ubuntu (9.10 preferred)
VirtualBox 3.1
Windows 7 Installer
1024 MB of RAM (at least)

Now let's get started:

1. Download the latest version of VirtualBox from HERE, and then install it.

2. Navigate to Applications --> System Tools and open VirtualBox.

3. Create a new virtual machine by clicking on the "New" button to start the setup wizard.

4. Create the name of your virtual machine (VM), in this case "Windows7", and then select the Operating System and its version (see below).

5. Specify the amount of memory (RAM) to be allocated to the VM. I've got 2048 MB of RAM so I decided to use half of it to make Windows 7 run a bit snappier.

6. Now create a new virtual hard disk and just click on "Next" to start the Create New Virtual Disk Wizard.

7. For the disk storage type, I use “Dynamically expanding storage” as I always do.

8. For the virtual disk storage size, make sure to allocate more than 5 GB for you to successfully install Windows 7. Click on "Next" and finish it up.

9. Windows 7 now appears on my list of virtual machines. Double-clicking Windows 7 will open the First Run Wizard. Click on "Next".

10. You will have to select the installation media for the guest OS so make sure the Windows 7 DVD installer is loaded.

11. Finish it up, and then a prompt will appear (see below). Just ignore it and click "OK".

12. Windows 7 installer will now be running in a moment. Just install Windows 7 like you normally would, and see the finished product :-)

Here are a couple of screenshots of Windows 7 running inside my Ubuntu desktop:

If you want to find out which do I think is better between Windows 7 and Ubuntu 9.10, watch out for my follow-up post (coming soon) from this article: Ubuntu 9.10 vs. Mac OS X Snow Leopard vs. Windows 7.


  1. What theme is in the screenshots ?

  2. another evidence that ubuntu is far more superior than any other OS out there. :D

  3. @iKonaK

    I was using the CrunchBang theme

  4. dynamically allocated disks are going to be heavily fragmented. You're better off allocating all the space up front if you have the space on your hard drive.

  5. @jehzlu if you are talking about the fact that running virtual box is possible and installing windows inside of ubuntu is possible maybe you should google virtual box because all 3 OS' windows, OS X and Ubuntu can be host OS and "virtual" OS so in this real of thought they are equal...... that is all

  6. What about performance? Practicaly what will the virtualbox layer will mean in means of performance if i shall install in windows let`s say microsoft sql server and visual studio?

  7. AnonymousJune 09, 2010

    but USB and the microphone will not work in windows 7

  8. how to run usb in virtual box..
    that have any setting to do...

  9. Any way to do this using an OEM install of Windows 7--i.e. I don't have the Win7 disks, but my PC came with Win7, and I want Ubuntu to be host and Win7 the guest OS?

  10. "jehzlau Said,
    January 8, 2010 3:30 AM

    another evidence that ubuntu is far more superior than any other OS out there. :D"

    another evidence that even if you have installed ubuntu you want to use some other OS :D

  11. AnonymousMay 30, 2011

    Thank you ^^

  12. If it's still possible to get help here, I do hope some one can help me out.
    I'm running WIN7, but somehow the system won't start correct. It's starting up, and then runs a loop of starting up again. Can be a virus, but I don't think it is.
    A friend told me, that by installing Ubunto on a USB stick, that way I could start my computer, and then back dating it. But we can't find out how.
    Can one you help me out, as I got important stuff in both word/excel/note, that I need to get out for my running project.

    Thank in advance.

    Regard René

  13. Try starting Win7 in safe mode (pressing F8 before Windows start) to load only necessary drivers. Select Safe Mode With Networking if you are connected. Login as you usually do, preferrably with an admin ID. Run chkdsk /f from a command prompt and restart the machine to see if that corrects your problem.