Best Virtual Desktop / OS Emulator Tools for Linux

Posted on 16 December 2008

There are plenty of tools available for creating virtual machines and servers in windows. These OS Emulation tools comes handy for testing software without investing in a large and expensive hardware lab. Before researching for this list, I was not aware that there are so many Linux tools available for creating virtual desktops and testing operating systems.


VirtualBox is a family of powerful x86 virtualization products for enterprise as well as home use. Not only is VirtualBox an extremely feature rich, high performance product for enterprise customers, it is also the only professional solution that is freely available as Open Source Software under the terms of the GNU General Public License (GPL).

This VM (virtual machine) application, owned by Sun Microsystems and created by a small company called innotek, is one of the most popular virtualization solutions for Linux.

“It’s the third most popular method to run Windows applications on Linux”, according to (trailing Wine, which is not an emulator/virtualizer, and VMWare, which is proprietary).

There’s good reason: it has a plenty of features, including snapshots, shared folders, RDP, ability to use host USB, and a lot of advanced hardware virtualization. There are two versions of VirtualBox. Installing the open-source edition is easy: just install the virtualbox-ose package  in the universe repositories. If  you want to install the enhanced but closed-source version, you’ll need to visit the Web site(below) and download the binaries from there.



A simple GTK frontend for VirtualBox. It’s still in beta (the site notes that “most of VirtualBox features are not supported,and those that are will probably fail”), but it’s a good beginning and progressing rapidly.

If you’re a Gnome or Xfce user who does not like using QT applications on GTKbased systems, give
VBoxGTK a spin. It is still in beta..

The site notes that

“most of VirtualBox features are not supported, and those that are will probably fail”

but it’s a good beginning and progressing rapidly. Right now, the developer is still focusing on stability, and as a result, most of the VirtualBox features aren’t available. Still, it boots operating systems, and it’s GTK. To install VBoxGTK, use the vboxgtk package in the universe repositories.


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R. MAK. - who has written 233 posts on ixibo.

How Should I describe me?... Well! I am a simple dude, who likes to indulge in intelligent conversation with an intelligent people, specially on technology topics hope you are one of them :p

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