Usage and Limitations
VBoxRawdisk is a small utility that makes it a little easier to generate the raw disk (VMDK) file required to load a real disk drive into VirtualBox.

It implements the steps described in Section 9 of the VirtualBox manual - Access to entire physical hard disk

When the utility is initiated it scans the physical drives attached to your Mac and presents a table similar to that used by Disk Utility. When a drive is selected, key attributes of that device are displayed, enabling you to determine which drive contains the data you wish to use in VirtualBox.

VBoxRawdisk also reads the VirtualBox registry to determine which virtual machines you have configured. When a disk has been selected, the menu of virtual machines is enabled and you can proceed with generating the VMDK file.

Usage and Limitations

This is dangerous stuff and there is a very real risk of destroying data if you inadvertently choose the incorrect virtual machine or the wrong disk. Be warned!!

VBoxRawdisk is only intended to configure access to an entire physical disk. It does not generate configurations for individual physical partitions.

  1. VBoxRawdisk does not create a virtual machine - you must use VirtualBox to do that, creating a new machine configured as required for the OS installed (or to be installed) on your raw drive.
  2. VBoxRawdisk will present a standard 'Save as' dialog for saving the generated VMDK file to somewhere on your machine. The default file name will be the same as the name of the selected virtual machine, so make sure you have selected things as you intended.
  3. VirtualBox requires ownership of the system device files (/dev/diskn*) associated with the selected disk. By default these device files are owned by the root user. You will see an authentication dialog enabling this change of ownership.
  4. Once created, your VMDK file will be added to the VirtualBox media registry. You can now cancel further operations in VBoxRawdisk and manually (i.e with VirtualBox) attach your VMDK to your virtual machine.
  5. VBoxRawdisk will optionally attach your VMDK to SATA controller 0, port 0, so you should add a SATA disk controller to your virtual machine configuration.
  6. VBoxRawdisk will optionally attempt to start the virtual machine.

Download VBoxRawdisk 1.1.0

VBoxRawdisk 1.1.0 - Changes and Features
  • Option to start VM headless.
  • New Icon.
  • Save/Restore default settings.
  • VM menu sorted by most recently used.

Download VBoxRawdisk 1.0.0

VBoxRawdisk 1.0.0 - Changes and Features
  • First public release