Proper setup

How to install Guest Additions for Windows 10 on VirtualBox

After installing Windows 10 in a VirtualBox VM, you must install the Guest Additions package for better usability and performance – here's how.

VirtualBox Guest Additions

On VirtualBox, the “Guest Additions” is a package that contains the drivers that allow the Windows 10 virtual machine to operate correctly in a virtualization environment.

The VirtualBox Guest Additions is provided as a virtual image to optimize the guest machine with the mouse pointer and keyboard integration, so you can navigate the environment and release the peripherals seamlessly.

The package also installs the virtual video drivers to improve the system performance and advanced graphics capabilities, such as hardware acceleration, multi-monitor support, and seamless windows to run applications as if they were installed on the host device. Furthermore, you also get time synchronization, the ability to share the clipboard content, and automated logging.

In other words, without the drivers, the virtual machine would perform slow and many advanced features (such as the ability to change the screen resolution, control transparency, mouse support, etc.) won’t be available or work correctly.

In this guide, you will learn the steps to install the VirtualBox drivers on Windows 10.

How to install VirtualBox Guest Additions on Windows 10

To install the Guest Additions on a Windows 10 virtual machine, use these steps:

  1. Open VirtualBox.

  2. Right-click the virtual machine, select the Start submenu and choose the Normal Start option.

  3. Sign in to your Windows 10 account.

  4. Click the Devices menu and select the Insert Guest Additions CD image option.

    Insert Guest Additions CD image
    Insert Guest Additions CD image
  5. Open File Explorer in the virtual machine (Windows key + E keyboard shortcut).

  6. Click on This PC from the left side.

  7. Under the “Devices and drives” section, double-click to open the VirtualBox Guest Additions disc.

  8. Double-click the VBoxWindowsAdditions.exe file to launch the installer.

    VBox Windows Additions
    VBox Windows Additions
  9. Click the Next button.

  10. Click the Next button again.

    Virtual drivers install location
    Virtual drivers install location
  11. Click the Install button.

    VirtualBox install Windows 10 drivers
    VirtualBox install Windows 10 drivers
  12. Select the Reboot now option.

  13. Click the Finish button.

Once you complete the steps, the virtual drivers will install, and after the restart, Windows 10 will be available to run normally in a virtual environment.

When a new version of VirtualBox becomes available with newer drivers, you can use the same instructions to update the Guest Additions on Windows 10. As you run the installer, the setup will replace the virtual drivers with the versions.

If you cannot mount the image into that machine, the VBoxGuestAdditions.iso is located in the VirtualBox installation folder (in this path: C:\Program Files\Oracle\VirtualBox), which you can use to add the package manually.