Update 28 July 2019: An updated version of this guide for Ubuntu Server 18.04 LTS is now available. Feel free to check it out.
Update 23 May 2020: This guide is ALREADY OUTDATED and might no longer work with new versions of Ubuntu and VirtualBox. Please consider switching to the updated guide instead. I will no longer respond to the replies to this gist. Thank you.
Mounting VirtualBox shared folders on Ubuntu Server 16.04 LTS
This guide will walk you through steps on how to setup a VirtualBox shared folder inside your Ubuntu Server guest. Tested on Ubuntu Server 16.04.3 LTS (Xenial Xerus)
Right-click your VM, then click Settings
Go to Shared Folders section
Add a new shared folder
On Add Share prompt, select the Folder Path in your host that you want to be accessible inside your VM.
In the Folder Name field, type
Uncheck Read-only and Auto-mount, and check Make Permanent
Start your VM
Once your VM is up and running, go to Devices menu -> Insert Guest Additions CD image menu
Use the following command to mount the CD:
sudo mount /dev/cdrom /media/cdrom
- Install dependencies for VirtualBox guest additions:
sudo apt-get update sudo apt-get install build-essential linux-headers-`uname -r`
- Run installation script for the guest additions:
- Reboot VM
sudo shutdown -r now
- Create "shared" directory in your home
- Mount the shared folder from the host to your ~/shared directory
sudo mount -t vboxsf shared ~/shared
- The host folder should now be accessible inside the VM.
Make the mount folder persistent
This directory mount we just made is temporary and it will disappear on next reboot. To make this permanent, we'll set it so that it will mount our
~/shared directory on system startup
- Edit fstab file in /etc directory
sudo nano /etc/fstab
- Add the following line to fstab (separated by tabs) and press Ctrl+O to Save.
shared /home/<username>/shared vboxsf defaults 0 0
- Edit modules
sudo nano /etc/modules
- Add the following line to
- Reboot the vm and log-in again
shutdown -r now
- Go to your home directory and check to see if the file is highlighted in green.
cd ~ ls
If it is then congratulations! You successfully linked the directory within your vm with your host folder.
How to point apache's web directory to our folder in the host.
- Remove apache's old
htmldirectory (WARNING! Backup your data if necessary)
sudo rm -rf /var/www/html
- Add a symbolic link in its place
sudo ln -s ~/shared /var/www/html