OS X Guest Additions

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OS X Guest Additions

Postby Calion » 30. Nov 2014, 22:52

It seems to me that almost all of the problems I'm having with my OS X guest (lack of multitouch support, no shared clipboards, etc.) are due to the lack of OS X Guest Additions.

What would it take to have Guest Addition support for OS X clients? How difficult would it be? Is there some way us OS X Guest users could crowdfund this effort?
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Re: OS X Guest Additions

Postby loukingjr » 30. Nov 2014, 23:35

Calion wrote:It seems to me that almost all of the problems I'm having with my OS X guest (lack of multitouch support, no shared clipboards, etc.) are due to the lack of OS X Guest Additions.

yes, that is correct.

What would it take to have Guest Addition support for OS X clients? How difficult would it be? Is there some way us OS X Guest users could crowdfund this effort?

I don't believe there is enough of a "crowd" that wants to run OSX guests on Apple hardware to "fund" very much. I suspect unless someone is willing to pour hundreds of thousands of dollars into the effort it's not likely to happen.
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Re: OS X Guest Additions

Postby Calion » 30. Nov 2014, 23:40

I don't believe there is enough of a "crowd" that wants to run OSX guests on Apple hardware to "fund" very much. I suspect unless someone is willing to pour hundreds of thousands of dollars into the effort it's not likely to happen.


Hundreds of thousands?? Seriously? I wouldn't have expected that the entire Virtualbox programming effort to date would have cost that much. How many man-hours are we talking about here?

Also, I'm confused about something. I thought that there were no OS X Guest Additions at all, not merely for OS X hosts.
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Re: OS X Guest Additions

Postby loukingjr » 30. Nov 2014, 23:51

There are no OSX guest additions. Why would you need OSX host additions? There are no OS host additions of any kind.

My understanding of how Oracle makes any money on VirtualBox is they have paid support contracts. Which I also have read are expensive and are primarily business users. i also would guess there aren't enough Mac users willing to pay for OSX guest support contracts to pay for however many man hours it would take.

If it was commercially feasible, I imagine we would see OSX guest additions.
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Re: OS X Guest Additions

Postby Calion » 1. Dec 2014, 00:07

But you specifically said that you "don't believe there is enough of a "crowd" that wants to run OSX guests on Apple hardware to "fund" very much." Are there OS X Guest Additions that are available for other hosts?
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Re: OS X Guest Additions

Postby loukingjr » 1. Dec 2014, 00:10

Calion wrote:But you specifically said that you "don't believe there is enough of a "crowd" that wants to run OSX guests on Apple hardware to "fund" very much." Are there OS X Guest Additions that are available for other hosts?

No. I meant there are probably more Windows and Linux users trying to run OSX guests on non-Apple hardware (thus violating Apple's SLA) than there are Apple users wanting to run OSX guests. No one has OSX guest additions.
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Re: OS X Guest Additions

Postby Calion » 1. Dec 2014, 00:25

loukingjr wrote:there are probably more Windows and Linux users trying to run OSX guests on non-Apple hardware (thus violating Apple's SLA) than there are Apple users wanting to run OSX guests.


And they would not be willing to help crowd fund those additions?
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Re: OS X Guest Additions

Postby loukingjr » 1. Dec 2014, 00:28

Calion wrote:
loukingjr wrote:there are probably more Windows and Linux users trying to run OSX guests on non-Apple hardware (thus violating Apple's SLA) than there are Apple users wanting to run OSX guests.


And they would not be willing to help crowd fund those additions?

Oracle would have no interest in adding OSX guest additions to the Windows and Linux versions of VirtualBox seeing Apple would most likely sue them. So there wouldn't be much incentive for non-Apple users to fund them.
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Re: OS X Guest Additions

Postby Calion » 1. Dec 2014, 00:38

loukingjr wrote:Oracle would have no interest in adding OSX guest additions to the Windows and Linux versions of VirtualBox seeing Apple would most likely sue them. So there wouldn't be much incentive for non-Apple users to fund them.


Ah! So Guest Additions are Host-specific. That's what I didn't know.

Is it possible for someone other than Oracle to develop these? Someone once claimed to be doing so, and I was wondering if it was possible.
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Re: OS X Guest Additions

Postby loukingjr » 1. Dec 2014, 03:14

No, the guest additions are not host specific. :D You can download the ones for Windows and Linux together as a separate download. If they were to create guest additions for OSX guests, they couldn't include them in the separate download or in the WIndows and Linux versions of VB.
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Re: OS X Guest Additions

Postby Technologov » 4. Dec 2014, 19:30

calion:
You would be surprised, but development of a virtualizer with complexity fo VirtualBox costs well over $100 million dollars. And Guest Additions for Mac OS X could cost a several hundred thousand dollars, yeah.

Engineers are super-expensive.
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Re: OS X Guest Additions

Postby mpack » 4. Dec 2014, 19:44

Technologov wrote:You would be surprised, but development of a virtualizer with complexity fo VirtualBox costs well over $100 million dollars.

That would certainly surprise me. That would be enough pay a team of 10 guys a salary of $100,000 pa each for 100 years - as opposed to the 8 years or so that VBox has been going. Of course I have no idea what Sun paid Innotek for it, or how you decide what value to place on it when Oracle bought Sun.

Frankly, I doubt that the lack of OS X GAs has anything to do with the Oracle team being scared of Apple's reaction - as far as I know I don't need Apple's permission to write and distribute software for OS X.

I think the plain truth is that there is no commercial market worth speaking of for OS X GAs. Apple host owners generally use VMs to run Windows, so they don't need OS X GAs. Most Windows users generally have no use for OS X, period (except maybe curious students). Factor in the fraction of users willing to pay anything to use VirtualBox, and I doubt the prospect looks very appealing. And remember that businesses want any resource investment to return a healthy profit, not just break even.
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Re: OS X Guest Additions

Postby loukingjr » 4. Dec 2014, 20:27

mpack wrote:
Technologov wrote:You would be surprised, but development of a virtualizer with complexity fo VirtualBox costs well over $100 million dollars.

That would certainly surprise me. That would be enough pay a team of 10 guys a salary of $100,000 pa each for 100 years - as opposed to the 8 years or so that VBox has been going. Of course I have no idea what Sun paid Innotek for it, or how you decide what value to place on it when Oracle bought Sun.
.
I agree. $100M seems at least an order of magnitude too high.

Frankly, I doubt that the lack of OS X GAs has anything to do with the Oracle team being scared of Apple's reaction - as far as I know I don't need Apple's permission to write and distribute software for OS X.

This I disagree with. First of all anyone can write and distribute software for OSX. However, what no one can do is reverse engineer Apple's APIs in order to make their software work. You would need Apple's permission and most likely pay for a license agreement.

I think the plain truth is that there is no commercial market worth speaking of for OS X GAs. Apple host owners generally use VMs to run Windows, so they don't need OS X GAs. Most Windows users generally have no use for OS X, period (except maybe curious students). Factor in the fraction of users willing to pay anything to use VirtualBox, and I doubt the prospect looks very appealing. And remember that businesses want any resource investment to return a healthy profit , not just break even.


This I also disagree with. If it wasn't commercially viable neither Parallels nor VMWare would be paying fees to use Apple APIs. Both support OSX guests on Apple hardware. At least one of them I know of are still in negotiations with Apple to get the rights to certain APIs so they can support 3D acceleration for OSX guests. As far as most Windows users not having any use for OSX? Then why are they always on the forum asking how to get OSX to run in VirtualBox on Windows hosts? For that matter, why are there so many articles and YouTube videos trying to create "Hackintoshes"? They aren't all students.
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Re: OS X Guest Additions

Postby socratis » 4. Dec 2014, 20:35

@Devs
How much development-time/difficulty are we talking about since there are already Linux and Solaris GAs? Honest question, is OSX so much different given the fact that it's BSD based?

I mean, the only really "needed" GA feature would be the Shared Clipboard, since the network shares can substitute Shared Folders (in a useful degree at least), and screen size adjustment is not something that you can't leave without (plus you can modify the size to a degree via VBoxManage).
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Re: OS X Guest Additions

Postby loukingjr » 4. Dec 2014, 20:47

socratis wrote:@Devs
How much development-time/difficulty are we talking about since there are already Linux and Solaris GAs? Honest question, is OSX so much different given the fact that it's BSD based?

I mean, the only really "needed" GA feature would be the Shared Clipboard, since the network shares can substitute Shared Folders (in a useful degree at least), and screen size adjustment is not something that you can't leave without (plus you can modify the size to a degree via VBoxManage).

Technically it is not BSD based. It is Darwin based which took features from NeXTSTEP, BSD and Unix. It's not a question of how difficult it is. It's a question of what Apple allows and doesn't allow. Personally I would want a lot more support for OSX gsts than a shared clipboard. Which is why I paid for a second hypervisor specifically for OSX support.
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