Getting FreeBSD to run on VirtualBox is quite simple and can be done in a few steps.
Start up VirtualBox [screenshot]. Next click “New” in the top left corner and the following screen will pop up [screenshot]. Choose a name, type and architecture as shown in this screenshot. [screenshot].
Right next we are going to specify some virtual hardware settings. These settings needs to be adjusted to your needs and to your hardware capability. Goes without saying that you cannot allocate 12 Gigs of Memory if the machine you are running this on only has 4 Gigs in total. The same goes for allocated hard disk space. So with that in mind enter a an amount of memory to be used with the virtual machine you are creating [screenshot]. Next create a Hard disk [screenshot].
Now you need to select a hard disk type [screenshot]. Let me elaborate this a bit as you have a few choices.
|VDI||VirtualBox Native Format|
If you are sure never to migrate this machine to another virtual appliance such as VMware or Hyper-V then it’s fine to stick with VDI the default settings. If you are not sure and perhaps in the future would like to import this hard disk into VMware or Hyper-V choose one of the other options. There is no penalty in performance regarding what format to use and I always go with VMDK “VMware” as I may need to import my virtual machines on either my MAC running VMware fusion or import it at work which would be VMware Esxi. As I said there is no penalty performing wise, but it’s a one way street you can not revert this to another file system once you made your choice. Not entirely true but explaining this would be a bit out of scope of this guide.
Next select how this disk is made up [screenshot]. If you have enough hard disk space choosing “Fixed Size” [screenshot] will indeed give you a speed boost versus choosing “Dynamically Allocated”. Next chose a name and size for the hard disk [screenshot]. Depending on whether you chose Dynamic or Fixed size the creation of the virtual hard disk may take from 0 to a couple of minutes [screenshot].
Right your virtual machine is almost ready [screenshot]. We just need to do a few minor adjustments and we are ready to fire it up. Right click on the virtual machine you just created and select settings [screenshot]. You will be taken to a screen where we can adjust as well as tweak the virtual machine [screenshot].
Under the “Motherboard Tab” [screenshot] uncheck the floppy drive, and change the boot order so it looks like this [screenshot]. Under the “Processor Tab” [screenshot] adjust the number of processors to be used with this virtual machine. [screenshot].
Under storage [screenshot] select the CD / DVD drive [screenshot] and to the right [screenshot] chose the ISO image of the Operating system you which to install. This ISO will now show up mounted. [screenshot]
Under network you have a few choices to simplify this it basically boils down to “Share IP address with the host NAT” [screenshot] or “Run the virtual machine with it’s own IP address Bridged” [screenshot]. Once your are done click “OK” and you are being returned to the main screen.
Start The Virtual Machine
You are now ready to fire up your VM by clicking the big green arrow at the top of the screen [screenshot]. You will see FreeBSD boot up [screenshot] once booted up you can now install FreeBSD as you would normally do on a physical machine [screenshot]
And we are done here.