Oracle VM VirtualBox Review

Provides granular control, light on resources, and is user-friendly


What is our primary use case?

I use this solution for experiments with virtualization in Linux, mostly.

We have an on-premises deployment.

What is most valuable?

The most valuable feature is the ability to copy bidirectionally between the desktop and the virtual machine.

The representation is very good. I have a problem with Hyper-V where you don't see the edges, especially the bottom and the top. With VirtualBox, I'm able to see that.

VirtualBox gives you granular control to very deep levels.

This solution is not resource-heavy on the system, and I'm able to run several virtuals at one time.

This solution is very user-friendly. 

What needs improvement?

I have to keep pressing the home key so that the mouse changes context, which is something that I don't like. It should have the functionality where if I move the mouse away from one screen, the context changes automatically.

This solution cannot run when Hyper-V is running, and it would be nice if these two solutions could co-exist.

I have never used this solution for production, but I wish there was a simpler way of deployment, and I wish there was an ecosystem around it. Some other solutions, such as Docker, have a whole surrounding ecosystem. You know where to get Docker files, you know what Docker works with, etc. It's a whole ecosystem instead of a single application. It comes with almost everything you need in one place, or in the community.

For how long have I used the solution?

I have been using this solution for many years.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

I am unsure as to how stable this solution would be in a production environment. I have always thought of it as an R&D solution, as opposed to a production solution. It isn't a problem related to VirtualBox, but rather, simply how I have chosen to use it.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

If you wanted to scale this solution out, or up, an automation tool may make it easier and more user-friendly, or more straightforward.

How are customer service and technical support?

I have never needed to speak with technical support.

Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

I prefer this solution to Hyper-V.

How was the initial setup?

The initial setup of this solution is very straightforward.

I upgraded to the most recent version a few weeks ago.

What about the implementation team?

I performed the implementation myself. I started using this solution a really long time ago, and you don't need anyone to help with VirtualBox.

What other advice do I have?

This is a great product and I use it a lot.

This is a good R&D solution, but I don't think it would be good in production. We look for different things in R&D, such as doing a proof of concept. In a production environment, having a whole ecosystem to support the solution, including for orchestration and automatic deployments, would be better. It would also need to have more talks, seminars, and conferences, calling people in that space and then posting them on YouTube. There is a lot more to it than the technical aspect.

Overall, I would rate this solution a nine out of ten.

Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
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