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I have Gateway NE56R laptop with Intel B960 processor, which do not support virtualization. But I want to install x64 bit guest OS on VirtualBox, it gives me error. I have also used VMware workstation, Parallels workstation. My host OS is Ubuntu 12.10 x64 bit.

Please tell me, which virtual software I can use in this situation.

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4 Answers 4

I did not test this, but qemu-system-x86_64, plain qemu without kvm does not use the processor's vt support. If it works, the performance might be a bit sluggish. Just boot some 64bit linux installation disk:

qemu-system-x86_64 -cdrom 64bitlinux.iso -boot d
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Virtual Box

When installed on a 64-bit host operating system there is no reason why Virtual Box should not be able to run a 64-bit guest operating system. This is different to running a 64-bit guest on a 32-bit host, which can only be done when the CPU supports virtualization.

On 64-bit hosts (which typically come with hardware virtualization support), 64-bit guest operating systems are always supported regardless of settings, so you can simply install a 64-bit operating system in the guest. Virtual Box Manual

Depending on the host OS you should enable I/O APIC, and on a Windows guest also use the Intel networking device.

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I think you undervalued the qualification (which typically come...) and hardware virt support is always needed. – guntbert Feb 13 '13 at 8:33
I am successfully running Virtual Box on an old non-Vt-x Intel CPU - not to the best performance but it does run. – Takkat Feb 13 '13 at 8:47
My objection was not about being able to run VB at all but to run 64-bit guests - but I cannot test it now. – guntbert Feb 13 '13 at 8:50
Hi Takkat, as you mention here you are running Virtual Box on an old non-vt-x intel cpu, so can you tell me the process step by step. – Tyagi Feb 25 '13 at 5:39

For the record, VirtualBox does not support 64-bit guests on non VT-x hardware:

VirtualBox's 64-bit guest support [...] require[s] hardware virtualization to be enabled. VirtualBox Manual

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This is a (pre-VT-X) limitation of the x86 design. I did some googling, and it seems the rub is the segment register. The wikipedia article on x86 virtualization says virtual machine software (without VT-X) has to find certain instructions and patch them (they will not behave the same in ring 3 as in ring 0), traps a lot of stuff, and fiddles about with the segmentation register while it's running the VM to keep the VM's OS from modifying the trap handlers. Really it's a pretty complicated bit of software. With 64-bit mode, no segment register, so this became impossible. AMD apparently added the segment register in 64-bit mode in later chips, so 64-bit OSes can run on them without VT-X, but otherwise VT-X or AMD-V is needed.

qemu-system-x64_64 will theoretically run whatever, but that's full emulation so it'll be rather slow.

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