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Nested Virtualization

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Introduction[edit]

It is possible to run Virtual Machines inside Virtual Machines (VMs). That is called Nested Virtualization. [1]

Qubes[edit]

Running VirtualBox, KVM or Qubes inside Qubes is difficult. Not offically supported by the Qubes developers. It is unrelated to Whonix ™. You can learn more about the current state of things by searching the qubes-devel and qubes-users mailing lists for terms such as VirtualBox, KVM and/or nested virtualization.

KVM[edit]

TODO document

VirtualBox inside VirtualBox[edit]

Be sure to change your host key. VirtualBox → Preferences → Input → Host Key. The "outside" and the "inside" Host Key must differ, otherwise you can not leave the VM "inside" anymore.

Using ACPI [2] and IOAPIC [3] [4] for all VM's, speeds up the "inside" VM a lot. These settings are in use for Whonix ™ VMs by default.

VirtualBox does not support VT in VT yet. [5] So the "inside" VM might be slow depending on your host's performance. Inside the "inside" VM, disable VT. VirtualBox → right click on VM → Settings → System → Acceleration → uncheck "Enable VT-x/AMD-V"

Forum discussion:
https://forums.whonix.org/t/nested-visualization-with-whonix-vbox-windows-7-inside-whonix-ws [archive]

See Also[edit]

Footnotes[edit]

  1. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nested_virtualization [archive]
  2. vboxmanage "Whonix-Workstation" modifyvm --acpi on
  3. VirtualBox → right click on VM → Settings → System → uncheck "Enable IO APIC"
  4. vboxmanage "Whonix-Workstation" modifyvm --ioapic on
  5. https://www.virtualbox.org/ticket/4032 [archive]


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