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01 July 2011, 09:25

VirtualBox 4.1 Beta 1 released for testing

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Oracle and the VirtualBox developers have released a first beta for version 4.1 of their open source desktop virtualisation application for x86 hardware. 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".

VirtualBox 4.1 Beta 1 adds support for cloning virtual machines (VMs) and raises the memory limit for 64-bit hosts to 1 TB. It includes an enhanced wizard for creating new virtual disks, as well as a new wizard for copying virtual disks.

Experimental WDDM (Windows Display Driver Model) graphics driver support is included for Windows guests and a new networking mode, UDP Tunnel, has been added that allows users to interconnect VMs running on different hosts. Other changes include a number of updates to the graphical user interface (GUI) and various bug fixes affecting, for example, the Windows USB host driver, TLS connections and 3D support.

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 Beta Feedback forum.

Further information about the release can be found in a post on the forums and in the mailing list announcement. VirtualBox 4.1 Beta 1 is available to download for Windows, Mac OS X, Linux and Solaris from the project's web site.

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 latest stable release is version 4.0.10, a maintenance update to the 4.0.x branch from the end of June.

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