Oracle unwraps VM VirtualBox 5.0 with focus on security

Disk-image encryption is now included in the virtualization software

Oracle VM VirtualBox 5.0 offers expanded drag-and-drop support.

Oracle VM VirtualBox 5.0 offers expanded drag-and-drop support.

After entering beta roughly three months ago, Oracle's VM VirtualBox 5.0 virtualization software is now generally available, offering faster performance and better security.

Oracle VM VirtualBox runs on standard x86 desktop and laptop computers and allows users to set up multiplatform virtual-machine environments for software development and testing. Using it, developers can create cloud and local applications without the overhead of a full server environment.

Now, with support for operating systems including Mac OS X Yosemite, Windows 10, Oracle Linux, Oracle Solaris and other Linux distributions, the new release of the cross-platform software improves performance by exposing a broader set of CPU instructions to the guest OS, Oracle said.

That, in turn, allows applications to make use of the latest hardware instruction sets.

Another feature that can significantly improve performance in the new version of the free and open-source software is paravirtualization support for Windows and Linux guests. Paravirtualization allows for a virtual-machine software interface that's not identical to that of the underlying hardware; in this case, it permits users to leverage the built-in virtualization support on operating systems such as Oracle Linux 7 and Microsoft Windows 7 and newer.

"You don't need to install extra device drivers anymore for performance," said Wim Coekaerts, Oracle's senior vice president for Linux and virtualization engineering.

Disk-image encryption, meanwhile, allows data to be encrypted on virtual hard-disk images transparently during runtime using the AES algorithm with up to 256-bit data-encryption keys.

That's particularly useful in companies where employees take their work laptops home or on trips, Coekaerts noted.

"Now, an employee's virtual machine for work could be encrypted," Coekaerts explained. "If someone stole the laptop, they couldn't really do anything without the key."

Oracle VM VirtualBox 5.0 also offers support for USB 3.0 devices, so "you can plug in a video camera, for example, and expose that device directly into your virtual machine," Coekaerts said.

Finally, support for bidirectional drag and drop has been expanded in version 5.0 to include more guest and host operating systems.

"If you run Windows or Linux inside a virtual machine and run it on top of a Mac or Windows desktop, you can drag and drop files between the host and the guest," Coekaerts said. "We now support basically every combination."

Version 5.0 of the software can now be downloaded from the VirtualBox website.

Join the newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Rocket to Success - Your 10 Tips for Smarter ERP System Selection

Tags Development toolsapplication developmentvirtualizationsoftwareOracle

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Katherine Noyes

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Sarah Ieroianni

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

The print quality also does not disappoint, it’s clear, bold, doesn’t smudge and the text is perfectly sized.

Ratchada Dunn

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The Huddle Board’s built in program; Sharp Touch Viewing software allows us to easily manipulate and edit our documents (jpegs and PDFs) all at the same time on the dashboard.

George Khoury

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The biggest perks for me would be that it comes with easy to use and comprehensive programs that make the collaboration process a whole lot more intuitive and organic

David Coyle

Brother PocketJet PJ-773 A4 Portable Thermal Printer

I rate the printer as a 5 out of 5 stars as it has been able to fit seamlessly into my busy and mobile lifestyle.

Kurt Hegetschweiler

Brother PocketJet PJ-773 A4 Portable Thermal Printer

It’s perfect for mobile workers. Just take it out — it’s small enough to sit anywhere — turn it on, load a sheet of paper, and start printing.

Matthew Stivala

HP OfficeJet 250 Mobile Printer

The HP OfficeJet 250 Mobile Printer is a great device that fits perfectly into my fast paced and mobile lifestyle. My first impression of the printer itself was how incredibly compact and sleek the device was.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?