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Sometimes while using VirtualBox, I have tried copying text from the virtual machine to the host machine but failed. Whenever that happens, I fix it by rebooting the virtual machine. Is there a solution to this because I don't want to keep rebooting again and again.

Note: Iit is always possible for me to copy text from the host to the virtual machine.

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Have you tried just re-installing the Guest Additions in the Virtual Machine? If not, check the answer from Pisu below. You didn't mention how you originally installed VirtualBox (external package from VirtualBox's website, or the virtualbox-ose package from the Ubuntu repositories) Also, what version you are on (both Ubuntu and VirtualBox). This info may help us help you. –  Jayson Rowe Sep 30 '11 at 1:58

8 Answers 8

In Ubuntu - you may need to install the virtualbox-guest-x11 (sudo apt-get install virtualbox-guest-x11)

and then start virutal box client (VBoxClient -all)

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There are only 2 ways:

  1. Create a shared folder between the VM and the Host machine.
  2. Create a host only network so as you can use SSH or Telnet to exchange files between the host and virtual machine
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The problem is that the VBoxClient for the clipboard has been killed.

Dmitry's solution above fixes it

muz@kratos:~/$ ps -ef | grep -i vbox
root       928     1  0 Jan31 ?        00:06:02 /usr/sbin/VBoxService
muz       1441     1  0 Jan31 ?        00:00:00 /usr/bin/VBoxClient --display
muz       1445     1  0 Jan31 ?        00:00:00 /usr/bin/VBoxClient --seamless
muz       1450     1  0 Jan31 ?        00:38:19 /usr/bin/VBoxClient --draganddrop
muz      10215  2769  0 10:04 pts/1    00:00:00 grep --color=auto -i vbox
muz@kratos:~/$ killall -9 /usr/bin/VBoxClient
muz@kratos:~/$ VBoxClient-all
muz@kratos:~/$ ps -ef | grep -i vbox
root       928     1  0 Jan31 ?        00:06:02 /usr/sbin/VBoxService
muz      10256     1  0 10:04 ?        00:00:00 /usr/bin/VBoxClient --clipboard
muz      10260     1  0 10:04 ?        00:00:00 /usr/bin/VBoxClient --checkhostversion
muz      10264     1  0 10:04 ?        00:00:00 /usr/bin/VBoxClient --display
muz      10268     1  0 10:04 ?        00:00:00 /usr/bin/VBoxClient --seamless
muz      10272     1  0 10:04 ?        00:00:00 /usr/bin/VBoxClient --draganddrop
muz      10280  2769  0 10:05 pts/1    00:00:00 grep --color=auto -i vbox
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How to fix shared clipboard in VirtualBox (Windows Guest)

  1. In VirtualBox Windows Guest, Open Task Manager
  2. Go to Processes Tab, highlight VBoxTray.exe and select End Process
  3. Go to Applications Tab and select New Task
  4. Browse to the VirtualBox Guest Additions installation folder and select VBoxTray.exe and select OK.

The bidirectional shared clipboard should work afterwards.

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In the Oracle virtual box setting go to

Settings > General > Advance

There is a an option Drag n Drop. Select the direction you want to copy the text.

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Thanks, that helped. I would have had to search for a long time to find that one. –  WitchCraft Apr 23 at 20:11

If your guest OS is ubuntu then running following two commands in ubuntu terminal should help:

$ killall VBoxClient
$ VBoxClient-all
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+1 as I too had this happen right after taking a snapshot of an Ubuntu 12 installation. These two lines did the trick for me! –  HostileFork Mar 7 '13 at 5:18
    
+1, this worked for me on Ubuntu 13.04 –  Moshe Jul 4 '13 at 23:36
1  
+1 ,This worked for Ubuntu 12.04 but I used $ killall VBoxService –  Ahmed Feb 24 at 0:35
1  
VBoxClient wasn't running on my Ubuntu. VBoxClient-all started the tools correctly and fixed host-to-guest pasting (but not the other way). Notice VBoxClient-all is the binary name and not a flag! –  Air May 22 at 15:18
up vote 5 down vote accepted

I found that I can do one thing to fix this problem.

That is, In virtualbox XP, I can kill VBoxTray.exe and restart it by task manager(ctrl+alt+del).

Thank you for answering my question.

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Unbelievable, it works great though :) Also on my Windows 2008R2 x64 virtual OS. Thanks for sharing! –  Koen Zomers Apr 6 '12 at 14:00

If needed, upgrade VirtualBox to latest version, currently 4.1.2, they solved many issues. Then reinstall Guest Additions on the VM, as copy-paste is managed by guest additions drivers.

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