I have a mathematical program that runs on 64 bit Ubuntu. I need to run it on my Windows 7 workstation, preferably without having to install Ubuntu instead of Windows, because this is a short term need. Is there a way I could run 64-bit Ubuntu as a virtual machine on my Windows 7 box?


You can download VirtualBox to run a virtual copy of Ubuntu.

Download a disk image of the Ubuntu 64-bit install CD here. Then open VirtualBox and create a new machine with the disk image as the start up disk.

I use this to run Ubuntu on Windows 7 every day and it works very well.

  • Just adding this: if your CPU can do this (it likely does) you will be able to run 64-bit Ubuntu in a Virtual Box even when your Windows 7 host is 32-bit only.
    – Takkat
    Apr 7 '12 at 8:13
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    Are there alternatives to VirtualBox for Windows users who want to run Ubuntu inside a VM? VirtualBox doesn't currently support Windows 10 :(
    – J86
    Aug 28 '15 at 10:56
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    I don't know of any that are free and as fully featured. VMWare is excellent, but expensive. Have you tried running VirtualBox on Windows 10? I know the site says it's unsupported, but it might still work. Aug 28 '15 at 13:22

You can use VirtualBox and if you really just want Ubuntu for the software i.e. rather than for the whole Unity interface based experience, you might consider Lubuntu instead.


Lubuntu is simply the official LXDE version of Ubuntu and while its spartan blue/grey looks may not win any beauty contests, it does work a lot better than other forms of Ubuntu in VirtualBox.

LXDE is a desktop environment designed for less capable hardware and therefore it is quite suited to virtualisation software, which typically isn't able to use your hardware as efficiently as a bare metal installation.


This really isn't an Ubuntu specific question, but you need to install Cygwin inside your Windows 7 session. Cygwin is a Linux emulator. You can then run your Linux executable from within your Cygwin session.


  • 4
    No, that is a common misconception about Cygwin. Cygwin does not (ever) run Linux executables. As is prominently stated on the Cygwin home page, "Cygwin is not... a way to run native Linux apps on Windows. You must rebuild your application from source if you want it to run on Windows." (emphasis in original) Cygwin is not a Linux emulator. Consequently, this really does not answer the question that was asked--Cygwin does not facilitate running Ubuntu or any other GNU/Linux distribution (or any non-Windows OS) on Windows. Jan 31 '13 at 12:58

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