For several months, the team has dedicated its efforts to crafting a KVM backend that meets and exceeds the expectations of VirtualBox’s diverse user base.
This new backend replaces vboxdrv, a traditional custom kernel module VirtualBox uses. It taps into the robust features of the Linux KVM hypervisor.
What Advantages Await VirtualBox Users?
The move is especially beneficial for users who predominantly run Windows as their guest operating system on top of VirtualBox. Windows’ security, heavily reliant on virtualization technologies, receives a substantial boost with support from the KVM hypervisor.
Furthermore, integrating with KVM allows VirtualBox to support modern hardware features that improve virtualization performance more efficiently, such as interrupt virtualization. The limitations the stock VirtualBox kernel module poses in handling these advanced features are now effectively addressed with the KVM backend.
Another exciting aspect of this move is the newfound capability to run VirtualBox alongside QEMU and even Cloud Hypervisor on a Linux host. This versatility opens up many use cases, enabling users to choose the most suitable virtualization front end for their specific needs.
For example, isolating security-critical services in a Cloud Hypervisor VM while running a user-facing Windows guest in a VirtualBox VM could strike an optimal balance between security and user experience.
Looking ahead, Cyberus Technology has outlined an ambitious roadmap for 2024, promising a suite of additional features and enhancements.
The source code for VirtualBox’s KVM backend is now publicly available on GitHub. You can build it with Cyberus Technology’s KVM backend and benefit from the improvements yourself.