Looking for confirmation if I can install elementary OS. I've set up an empty VM in VirtualBox 5.0.8 (OSX host) and will download the files, set up the USB stick. It should work. Any warnings or cautions I've missed?

2 Answers 2


If you want to install

elementary OS as guest on OS X ( host)

In this case, you no need to create a live usb or something to install. The only one you need is .iso file.

Here are instructions to install:

  1. Create Virtual Machine

    Open VBox --> Select New --> click on Next until you create VM.
    (If you want to do any changes to default options, you can change)

  2. Now we need to install directly from .iso (to avoid creating live usb/cd)

    If you have only live usb, and no .iso then head straight to Note at the bottom)

    First place .iso file in a particular location.

    Now close Virtual Machine (not VBox) and

    open settings --> storage --> select Adds Optical Drive (green + with disk image)



  3. Clicl on Choose disk and navigate to location of .iso file.

  4. Select .iso file and click on Open and then click on OK

  5. Now close settings and start Virtual Machine


VirtualBox itself does not support booting from a USB device. But there is a way, for that see my post in Ask Ubuntu.


You do not have to make an USB stick for installing on Virtualbox. Just download the ElementaryOS image and install a new VM in Virtualbox.

To create a new VM in Virtual box click the new button, select linux and Ubuntu in the initial screen. Follow the rest of the steps.

hope this helps

  • This answer doesn't quite work for me. I have a number of issues. First, after the installation process is finished and it asks to Restart Now, the system hangs during the boot-up sequence. I have to forcibly shutdown the virtual machine. Second, when I successfully boot up into elementary, it's in 640x480 screen resolution. There is no other resolution option in Settings. This resolution is completely unusable. Commented Aug 15, 2016 at 22:59
  • Did you try installing the guest additions to your box? You can do so by booting your box and go to the vbox menu and select devices -> install guest additions cd image... and install the guest additions. Commented Aug 16, 2016 at 8:47
  • Yes, I tried that. I get an error message: "Unable to insert the virtual optical disk /Applications/VirtualBox.app/Contents/MacOS/VBoxGuestAdditions.iso into the machine. Would you like to try to force insertion of this disk?" I click on Force Unmount and nothing happens. Commented Aug 16, 2016 at 13:12

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