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There’s a facility with VirtualBox to install “Guest Additions” – various utilities for a particular OS that will enhance it’s capabilities to work with VirtualBox. Most of the other virtualisation software has its own equivalent.

However, I’ve struggled to get it work until I came across an article in PcPro (October 2007) about how to do just that. It’s for Ubuntu but works just as well for Kubuntu.

First of all mount the Guest Additions disk. Now run the following…

sudo aptitude install build-essential linux headers-uname -r

When that’s done you’re supposed to change to the CD rom and run the following…

sudo sh ./VBoxLinuxAdditions.run

For some reason I can’t get to the CD Rom via the terminal program (well I could, but it said there was nothing on it). Instead I found, by more luck than judgement, that I was able to install it at root via clicking on the CD Rom icon.

Anyway it worked. Amongst other things I can now resize my Kubuntu window up to the full 1280×1024 of my monitor. I’ve also got seamless mouse use – no more using a special key to move in and out of the virtual window, back to the host. All very handy.

Lastly, the same article gave details of a useful command line program provided with VirtualBox for making clones of your virtual hard drives. The command iis in the VirtualBox folder and is…

VBoxManage clonevdi {source disk} {output file}

The source disk is the full path to where you have the virtual drive stored.