Problem with VirtualBox

After upgrading from Ubuntu 14.04 to 14.10 I have a problem with starting a VirtualBox virtual machine. I'm running VirtualBox on a 64-bit host using two virtual machines, one a Windows 7 (32 bit) guest and the other a Windows XP guest. After starting either virtual machine, the initial Windows splash screen opens and then disappears followed by the state of the machine reported as aborted. I had no problem when using Ubuntu 14.04.

At first I got the error message Kernel driver not installed (rc=-1908)

There was no /etc/init.d/vboxdrv

After googling around and checking questions on askubuntu finding various pieces of advice I reinstalled the packages (with the currently installed versions shown)

   virtualbox-dkms          4.3.18-dfsg-1
   virtualbox               4.3.18-dfsg-1
   unity-scope-virtualbox   0.1+13.10.20130723-0ubuntu1
   virtualbox-qt            4.3.18-dfsg-1
   virtualbox-source        4.3.18-dfsg-1

I also checked I have the most current version of the kernel and kernel headers

$ uname -a
Linux Maria-Agnesi 3.16.0-25-generic #33-Ubuntu SMP Tue Nov 4 12:06:54 UTC 2014 x86_64 x86_64 x86_64 GNU/Linux

and the headers for this kernel are installed

$ dpkg-query -s linux-headers-generic

Package: linux-headers-generic
Status: install ok installed
Priority: optional
Section: kernel
Installed-Size: 28
Maintainer: Ubuntu Kernel Team <kernel-team@lists.ubuntu.com>
Architecture: amd64
Source: linux-metak
Depends: linux-headers-3.16.0-25-generic
Description: Generic Linux kernel headers
 This package will always depend on the latest generic kernel headers

In synaptic the installed version is shown as 3.16.0-25.33

Despite repeatedly reinstalling all the packages /etc/init.d/vboxdrv is never created.

I tried sudo modprobe vboxdrv, but that did nothing.k

And I checked I am a member of the vboxusers group k

$ sudo members --all vboxusers

Any ideas, the only thing I can think to do next is a complete reinstall of the entire system.


2 Answers 2


Recent versions of VirtualBox (4.3.18+) don't seem to install file /etc/init.d/vboxdrv. The instructions you have been following are obsolete.

Just start virtualbox and if it needs to recompile modules it will tell you.

  • Unfortunately, that doesn't happen. Whether I start virtualbox from a launcher or the command line there is no error message nor is vboxdrv created. Nov 7, 2014 at 5:53
  • Well, if there is no error message then maybe everything just works and you don't actually have a problem. What happens if you try to run a VM?
    – sмurf
    Nov 8, 2014 at 11:47
  • The Windows splash screen appears, then it disappears and the VM is tagged as aborted. I don't know what the connection is, if there is even one, but after the upgrade to 14.10 I found another borked application, TeX. I decided to bite the bullet and do a fresh install of 14.10 and now everything is working, so far. Nov 9, 2014 at 2:53

It seems that the problem is in the old Virtual Box Extension Pack as has been discussed here:


So this is basically not a bug, but another VB perk. The solution is to download matching Extension Pack version, which can be found here:


Or, alternatively, use KVM.

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.