Image showing 'sudo modprobe vboxdrv' on a terminal with response "modprobe: ERROR: could not insert 'vboxdrv': Operation not permitted" Dialog with title "Kernel driver not installed (rc=-1908)" I recently installed Ubuntu 20.04. I am trying to run Win 10 on Oracle Virtual Box 6.1.8(last version) but I get error

"Kernel driver not installed (rc=-1908)"

It suggests to run 'modprobe vboxdrv' on the terminal but when I do (adding sudo ) I get back this:

modprobe: ERROR: could not insert 'vboxdrv': Operation not permitted

Does anyone know how to sort it out please?

  • What version VB? Exactly how did you install it? Do you have dkms installed?
    – heynnema
    May 25, 2020 at 22:29
  • ok, text edited
    – Lenny
    May 26, 2020 at 0:05
  • Did you follow the instructions and install the 'virtualbox-dkms' package? That package also has special instructions that are shown during setup that say you may have to call command line instructions to tell dkms to build vboxdrv. May 26, 2020 at 0:22
  • I downloaded and installed directly from the app centre, there was not instruction about virtualbox-dkms package installation, I am gonna try to delete and reinstall it.
    – Lenny
    May 26, 2020 at 13:20

1 Answer 1


Instructions on how to correctly install VirtualBox on a Linux based system can be found at https://www.virtualbox.org/manual/ch02.html#install-linux-host

Although it is a bit outdated, the basics of the installation will always remain the same. based on the error message, it seems that the package "dkms" was not installed, or the installation of it gone corrupt and requires reinstallation.

If this is not your own computer, it could also be an issue regarding the set user bit or sudoers file that the owner may have set. Thus when running even with sudo dkms may not run. In that case it is something that you will have to ask the owner of the computer to give you permission to access.

  • Hi, I tried to follow the instructions at the link but my terminal says that these packages don't exist, I had virtual box working before on win10 host and there was not such a problem, could it be that as Ubuntu 20.04 has been released recently there are not yet drivers to run virtual box? What do you mean the permission to the owner? The laptop is mine
    – Lenny
    May 26, 2020 at 13:23
  • @Lenny You did not specify in the main question whether you were the original owner of the laptop or not. Does your laptop have EFI Secure Boot enabled? If so, then this could be the problem as stated on the error message that is popping up. In the case that your laptop does have EFI Secure Boot enabled, then you need to have the kernel modules (vboxdrv, vboxnetflt, vboxnetadp, vboxpci) signed. As it states in the error message, look into the Linux system's documentation to know how to sign the kernel modules, if your laptop has EFI Secure Boot enabled. May 26, 2020 at 23:29

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