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My Ubuntu computer won't load VirtualBox.

The message I'm recieving is: Error:
Failed to create the VirtualBox COM object.
The application will now terminate.
Start tag expected, '<' not found.

Location: '/home/josh/.VirtualBox/VirtualBox.xml', line 1 (0), column 1.

/build/buildd/virtualbox-4.1.18-dfsg/src/VBox/Main/src-server/VirtualBoxImpl.cpp[484] (nsresult VirtualBox::init())

Result Code: NS_ERROR_FAILURE (0x80004005)
Component: VirtualBox
Interface: IVirtualBox {c28be65f-1a8f-43b4-81f1-eb60cb516e66}

My Computer is currently running Ubuntu 12.10.

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Could you add some info? AKA, your computer type (eg. Toshiba Satellite A105, some specs, etc...) That would help. – RPi Awesomeness May 6 '13 at 23:47
It's a Dell inspiron comp with an AMD Athlon(tm) 64 X2 Dual Core Processor 5200+ × 2 with Microsoft Windows 7 Professional 64x and Linux Ubuntu 12.10 64x. – Joshua May 7 '13 at 0:21
Can you post the contents of the VirtualBox.xml file? – Dr.Tower May 7 '13 at 0:48

I have listed the files and found that there are 2 files . One named VirtualBox.xml and the other VirtualBox.xml-prev. I noticed that the first file`s size was 0 bytes and the second like 1243 bytes, anyway different than 0.

So I have opened the both files and I copied the content from VirtualBox.xml-prev to the first file, save and closed the file and worked.

In my laptop the files were located in ~/.VirtualBox.

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Short version, In your VM folder rename your *.xml-prev file to *.xml, for VirtualBox >= v4.0, rename the *.vbox-prev file to *.vbox. – Radu Maris Jan 29 '14 at 13:28

Delete that file and everything will be okay. Open your terminal and:

 rm /home/josh/.VirtualBox/VirtualBox.xml
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This may be true, but lacks a bit of information. Can you tell why it is OK to delete that file and how this affects loading of the VM? – Jan Sep 19 '14 at 10:48
You will still need to reconfigure the virtual machine and relay the old disk drive to the new configuration once you delete this VirtualBox.xml. – 0xC0DEGURU Nov 26 '15 at 17:19
It also deletes the vm I had! Anyway to recover it? – Abhishek Bhatia Feb 10 at 6:02

Here's how you can fixed it.

  1. Uninstall whatever version of VirtualBox you currently have installed: How to uninstall VirtualBox.
  2. Delete the local hidden folder (/.VirtualBox, which contains an .XML file which is causing the error).
  3. Install VirtualBox: VirtualBox/Installation.
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