VM doesn't start on Mountain Lion

Discussions related to using VirtualBox on Mac OS X hosts.

Re: VM doesn't start on Mountain Lion

Postby loukingjr » 26. Sep 2012, 23:55

gboswellsac wrote:
loukingjr wrote:
gboswellsac wrote:First Kudo's to Oracle/VirtualBox for the responses and fixes for what is an Apple failure to test before sending out products and software updates.

I just have a comment about this post. I have been around computers all my life and I don't remember any OS that had a major update where some piece of software didn't break. Usually many will and do break. It is near impossible for any manufacturer to test all possible configurations of hardware and software.


I stand corrected in the light of your experience but I've come to expect that when a manufacturer has 100% control of the hardware and 100% control of the OS running on it that maybe I could expect most everything to work out of the box on the equipment...


Apple hardly has 100% control over the hardware or software people may use. Apple has control over their own hardware and software. For example I own several Wacom tablets. When purchased their drivers worked with the Apple hardware and OS at the time they were sold. Does this mean they will work forever with whatever hardware and software changes that will inevitably come? Of course not. They will have to rewrite the drivers to adapt to the changes. What people seem to not realize is there are billions of permutations of hardware and software on any platform. No manufacturer can possible test all combinations that are possible in any reasonable amount of time if at all. Not Apple, not anyone.

There is no need to apologize. People tend to get frustrated when things don't go as they would like. It seems obvious to me that VirtualBox 4.2.1 was written because the previous versions of VB did not run correctly on Ivy Bridge processors. Was that Apple's fault or Oracle's? Based on the people's comments above who do have Ivy Bridge MBPs, VB 4.2.1 fixed their problem. It never ceases to amaze me that when hundreds, thousands, tens of thousands of people can and do run a product successfully there will be individuals who think because in their case when they have trouble, it must be the OS or the hardware. Not, "hmmm, maybe I did something wrong, something in my system is corrupted or something that I had installed which used to run without issues is now causing a problem".

There is of course a very simple solution to this of course. Try out hardware with software you need to run before you purchase it or wait till things settle down before jumping in on new products.
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Re: VM doesn't start on Mountain Lion

Postby michaln » 27. Sep 2012, 09:14

loukingjr wrote:It seems obvious to me that VirtualBox 4.2.1 was written because the previous versions of VB did not run correctly on Ivy Bridge processors.

That is at best a gross oversimplification, at worst seriously misleading. VirtualBox 4.2.0 (and older) has no trouble running on Ivy Bridge processors. Those VirtualBox releases also worked fine on Mountain Lion up to and including version 10.8.1.

With 10.8.2, VirtualBox no longer worked on the Ivy Bridge Macs (the very same systems where it had worked before the 10.8.2 update). The failures to start/run VMs did not happen because of the processor but rather because the semantics of a few kernel memory management APIs changed in 10.8.2. The change is only effective on the Ivy Bridge Macs (it is almost certainly related to IOMMU aka VT-d support, which is not available on older Macs due to missing chipset support).

These OS X kernel changes were not advertised and as far as we know, they are not (yet?) documented. They certainly aren't mentioned in the 10.8.2 release notes.

Was that Apple's fault or Oracle's?

Folks will have to form their own opinion on that.
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Re: VM doesn't start on Mountain Lion

Postby loukingjr » 27. Sep 2012, 10:09

michaln wrote:
loukingjr wrote:It seems obvious to me that VirtualBox 4.2.1 was written because the previous versions of VB did not run correctly on Ivy Bridge processors.

That is at best a gross oversimplification, at worst seriously misleading. VirtualBox 4.2.0 (and older) has no trouble running on Ivy Bridge processors. Those VirtualBox releases also worked fine on Mountain Lion up to and including version 10.8.1.

With 10.8.2, VirtualBox no longer worked on the Ivy Bridge Macs (the very same systems where it had worked before the 10.8.2 update). The failures to start/run VMs did not happen because of the processor but rather because the semantics of a few kernel memory management APIs changed in 10.8.2. The change is only effective on the Ivy Bridge Macs (it is almost certainly related to IOMMU aka VT-d support, which is not available on older Macs due to missing chipset support).

These OS X kernel changes were not advertised and as far as we know, they are not (yet?) documented. They certainly aren't mentioned in the 10.8.2 release notes.

Was that Apple's fault or Oracle's?

Folks will have to form their own opinion on that.

I actually meant it to be simple to make a point and I do hate to type. I realize VB 4.2.1 came out to address OSX 10.8.2. I didn't mean to imply it had to be Apple's or Oracle's fault. The way I see it, changes were made in OSX 10.8.2, VB 4.2.1 addressed those changes. It was actually no one's "fault". I could of worded it better.
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Re: VM doesn't start on Mountain Lion

Postby michaln » 27. Sep 2012, 10:23

loukingjr wrote:I actually meant it to be simple to make a point and I do hate to type. I realize VB 4.2.1 came out to address OSX 10.8.2. I didn't mean to imply it had to be Apple's or Oracle's fault. The way I see it, changes were made in OSX 10.8.2, VB 4.2.1 addressed those changes. It was actually no one's "fault". I could of worded it better.

Sure. I don't think assigning blame is straightforward here, which is why I didn't want to do it :) It could have been handled better but in the end I think the damage was not that great.

The larger point I suppose is that software updates can and do break stuff sometimes (whether it's OS updates or VirtualBox updates).
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Re: VM doesn't start on Mountain Lion

Postby loukingjr » 27. Sep 2012, 10:27

michaln wrote:
loukingjr wrote:I actually meant it to be simple to make a point and I do hate to type. I realize VB 4.2.1 came out to address OSX 10.8.2. I didn't mean to imply it had to be Apple's or Oracle's fault. The way I see it, changes were made in OSX 10.8.2, VB 4.2.1 addressed those changes. It was actually no one's "fault". I could of worded it better.

Sure. I don't think assigning blame is straightforward here, which is why I didn't want to do it :) It could have been handled better but in the end I think the damage was not that great.

The larger point I suppose is that software updates can and do break stuff sometimes (whether it's OS updates or VirtualBox updates).

Exactly, it should be expected.
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Re: VM doesn't start on Mountain Lion

Postby gboswellsac » 27. Sep 2012, 17:33

Sorry with all the blame no blame here I started with casual comment about Apple but I still cannot get 4.2.1 to install .... several posts ago.... any suggestions as I'm not the only one at present. I have two students with the identical problems on the 10.8.2 release, with the 4.2.1 release. I've looked over all three and there is no common thread among them I can see. The only common is ivy bridge, 10.8.2 and virtual box 4.2.1 giving the error noted earlier. I've recommended them to go back to Lion so their VB will work again. I'm the only one that needs the projector connectivity and must use 10.8.2. Tell me what actions to take to further delineate the problem so you can tell me what I've done incorrect. Thanks
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Re: VM doesn't start on Mountain Lion

Postby michaln » 27. Sep 2012, 17:53

gboswellsac wrote:Sorry with all the blame no blame here I started with casual comment about Apple but I still cannot get 4.2.1 to install

It would be wise to start a new thread. If your problem is something other than inability to start VMs on 10.8.2, it's something other than this thread's topic, and therefore should be separate.

Tell me what actions to take to further delineate the problem so you can tell me what I've done incorrect. Thanks

If you can't install, check the installer logs (in Console.app). There should be some clue there. But please create a new thread.
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Re: VM doesn't start on Mountain Lion

Postby Prashant Rupapara » 29. Sep 2012, 19:17

same error on my macbook pro after updating to 10.8.2.
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Re: VM doesn't start on Mountain Lion

Postby gboswellsac » 2. Oct 2012, 14:42

From someone who fought this for a while on an IvyBridge .... solution move the VirtualBox from Applications to the trash, shutdown MBP. Restart cold , a reboot would probably been ok also, download and install the VirtualBox 4.2.1 and it's extension pak ... and it will work. The people at VirtualBox are great, fixing an oversite (or lack of testing) of Apple. I had to do the above after trying 3 times installing 4.2.1 but I failed to reboot allowing all of pre 4.2.1 VirtualBox to be removed from memory. I was a in such a panic I did not remember that VirtualBox has startup pieces in memory on boot (like most every major software) and the only real way to clear after an uninstall is to reboot. Hope this helps. :oops:
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Re: VM doesn't start on Mountain Lion

Postby BfdWx » 4. Oct 2012, 17:46

Still no update for those of us this does not work for? Is anybody still trying to fix the issue?
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Re: VM doesn't start on Mountain Lion

Postby michaln » 4. Oct 2012, 19:37

BfdWx wrote:Still no update for those of us this does not work for? Is anybody still trying to fix the issue?

"This does not work" does not work as a problem report.
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Re: VM doesn't start on Mountain Lion

Postby BfdWx » 4. Oct 2012, 22:08

VB opens with no issues, as soon as windows is started the iMac shuts down, that's all I know.
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Re: VM doesn't start on Mountain Lion

Postby michaln » 4. Oct 2012, 23:46

BfdWx wrote:VB opens with no issues, as soon as windows is started the iMac shuts down, that's all I know.

That really does not sound like the problem caused by the 10.8.2 update at all.

Since folks are having trouble understanding how forum topics work, I'm going to have to lock this thread. No one reported the original problem again since the 4.1.23/4.2.1 update, and the follow-ups are incomplete and confused to the point of being worthless. It seems that tacking some random stuff onto this thread encourages people to keep all the relevant details to themselves, on the theory that if they just add it here, everything will be clear to us. It won't. So please create a separate thread and fully describe the problem you're having.
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