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10 December 2010, 11:40

Oracle releases second VirtualBox 4.0 beta

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VirtualBox Logo Just a few days after the first beta arrived, Oracle has issued a second beta for version 4.0.0 of the open source VirtualBox desktop virtualisation application for x86 hardware. While the second beta doesn't include any new features, it does address a variety of bugs found in the previous development version. Bug fixes are included for issues related to, for example, DVD detection, HDA audio on OpenSolaris and Ubuntu 10.10 guests, multi-monitor support for X.Org Server 1.3 or later, and Solaris and Linux hosts.

According to Oracle's Frank Mehnert, the preview of the next major update to VirtualBox is considered to be a "bleeding-edge release meant for early evaluation and testing purposes". As with all development releases, use in production environments and on mission critical systems is not advised. The developers ask users testing the release not to report issues to the VirtualBox Bugtracker, but instead to provide feedback about any problems they encounter via the VirtualBox forum.

More details about the release, including a list of known issues, can be found in a post on the VirtualBox Forums and in the official release announcement. VirtualBox 4.0.0 Beta 2 is available to download from the project's site. The latest stable release of VM VirtualBox is version 3.2.12 from the end of November.

Starting with version 4.0 the license for VirtualBox has changed. For the first time, both the base Oracle VM VirtualBox product source code and the binary are licensed under the GPLv2, while the Extension Pack mechanism, which allows third-party sources to add their own add-on functionality, is licensed under the PUEL. The change means that distributors shipping the Open Source Edition (OSE) of VirtualBox no longer need to build from the sources themselves.

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