Oracle launches VirtualBox 4.0 beta 1

Not long after releasing VM VirtualBox version 3.2.12, Oracle announced the first beta for VirtualBox version 4.0, which will be a new major release. As of this version VirtualBox will introduce Extension Packs which Oracle and 3rd parties can use to delivers additional functionality to the product. Oracle will release the Oracle VM VirtualBox Extension Pack which adds support for USB 2.0, RDP Server and the PXE bootloader with E1000 support.

Also intoduced with version 4.0 is a different licensing mechanism, the H reports . Both the product source code and the binaries will be licensed under GPLv2, The Extension Pack mechanism will be licensed under the VirualBox Personal Use and Evaluation Licence (PUEL), which means that distributors shipping the Open Source Edition of VirtualBox no longer need to build from the sources themselves.

Besides some bugfixing the following new features will be added:

•New settings/disk file layout for VM portability

•Open Virtualization Format Archive (OVA) support

•VMM: support more than 1.5/2 GB guest RAM on 32-bit hosts

•Language bindings: uniform Java bindings for both local (COM/XPCOM) and remote (SOAP) invocation APIs

•Chipset: added support for the Intel ICH9 chipset with 3 PCI buses, PCI express and Message Signaled Interrupts (MSI)

•Audio: Intel HD Audio is now available as guest hardware, for better support with modern guest operating systems (e.g. 64-bit Windows).

•GUI: redesigned user interface with guest window preview

•GUI: new display mode with downscaled guest display

•Resource control: added support for limiting a VM’s CPU time and IO bandwidth.

•Storage: support asynchronous I/O for iSCSI, VMDK, VHD and Parallels images

•Storage: support for resizing VDI and VHD images

•Windows Additions: support for automatically updating the Guest Additions (requires installed Windows Guest Additions 4.0 or later)

•Guest Additions: support for copying files into the guest file system