Many users of OpenSolaris have noticed that with the current release of VirtualBox (3.1.2) and the current development release of OpenSolaris (130 as of this writing, with 131 likely to arrive soon), the VirtualBox guest additions don't work any longer.

The VirtualBox developers are aware of this, and will deliver compatible additions in the next release (probably numbered 3.1.4, if history is any guide). However, since they (wisely) don't tell the world their release dates, this leaves lots of people who do OpenSolaris development and testing inside virtual machines in an uncomfortable situation: almost every "cool" feature of VirtualBox no longer works, and everything is "slow".

So, since we were bitten by this same issue, we rolled up our sleeves and got to work. This appears to possibly be the first time an "outsider" has attempted to build the Solaris additions. So, much fun (read: hours of hair pulling) ensued. But, thanks to the friendly folks who work on VirtualBox and hang out in #vbox on Freenode, we've managed to get a build up!

Just run the following commands in a terminal in your OpenSolaris guest:
(You don't need to use pfexec, but you need the Software Installer or Primary Administrator role for this to succeed. The user you created when you installed OpenSolaris is a Primary Administrator.)


Once you've done that, regardless of what the package says, REBOOT THE GUEST. There have been no success reports of simply logging out and logging back in making the new additions work. It is unclear at this time whether the bug is in the VirtualBox Additions or OpenSolaris.

Hopefully, this will work for you until the next VirtualBox release is polished off. Please let us know via email or IRC (both options available on our contact page) whether this works for you. We apologize, but we cannot provide telephone support for these additions. (In fact, we can provide little support at all, since all we did was package the work of others!) And please feel free to leave your impressions in a comment below!

[Update 1]

The previous version didn't install properly on 32-bit guests. This has been corrected, as well as a typo in the script which didn't properly uninstall the old additions. You only need to reinstall if you have a 32-bit guest.

[Update 2]

VirtualBox 3.1.4 has been released. The additions which ship with 3.1.4 are newer than the ones available on this page. You don't need the additions on this page with 3.1.4 or newer. If you install VirtualBox from the "extra" IPS repository in OpenSolaris, note that it takes some time after release before the new version appears as an available update. In the mean time, while you're still using 3.1.2, please feel free to use these additions.

Greenviolet would like to give a big thank you to everyone who gave feedback on these additions. We'll be sure to point the developers at this page again when we email our experiences to the VirtualBox developer list. :)


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  2. Hi, tried on b132 and it works fine there. In KDE4, the host must have video acceleration on, otherwise kwin crashes, but that's rather a KDE problem ;-) I found some issues when removing the package. First was that the xorg.conf was not automagically updated, so it still contained references to vbox drivers and therefore X refused to start. Removing the xorg.conf file fixed that. second issue was that the file /usr/X11/lib/ (that the additions package replaced) was left on the machine, but since it contained references to removed libraries, any GL related compilations would fail. I did pfexec pkg fix SUNWxorg-mesa to fix the file.

    hajma Thu, 11 Feb 2010

  3. Installed your VBox Guest Additions in a freshly installed SXCE snv_b130 guest on VBox v3.1.2 and rebooted. Works flawlessly up to now. Thanks! (datadigger on

    Kees Nuyt Sat, 23 Jan 2010

  4. Fixes some issues for me, but the most annoying one remains-- seamless mode still completely hosed for me on OS X host :/

    Calum Benson Wed, 20 Jan 2010

  5. Other than a completely unrelated issue with a transparent proxy, the additions seem to be working great, they even fixed one minor issue that i hadn't bothered to figure out before (login screen was a gigantic resolution bigger than my physical screen). copying and pasting appears to work fine, as does the mouse cursor stuff, i haven't tried any of the GL stuff yet but will a bit later on.

    Ryan Voots Tue, 19 Jan 2010

  6. Also, as always, be sure to make a snapshot before installing potentially VM-breaking software... :D (Yay spamming my own article's comments...)

    Matt Lewandowsky Tue, 19 Jan 2010

  7. Note that you should probably delete your old before running the commands again. ;)

    Matt Lewandowsky Tue, 19 Jan 2010

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