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I want to create a private network between virtual machines running in multiple hosts using Virtualbox. Linux will be used as guest operating system, and Windows in the hosts.

How do I set this up using Virtualbox?

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up vote 3 down vote accepted

Option 1: Hardware

  • Purchase a dedicated NIC for each machine (or use VLANs if your NICs support them).
  • Attach these NIC to the virtual machines only
  • Connect these NICs together with an isolated physical switch or use VLANs on your switch if it is supported

This should give you a private network between hosts

Option 2: Software

  • Configure an OpenVPN server on a guest VM
  • Have each Linux machine VPN to the OpenVPN server on a network that only exists on the OpenVPN guest VM

By connecting the machines using virtual private networking, you should be able to create a private LAN that only those machines exist on.

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+1 for simplicity – sybreon Jul 28 '09 at 16:18

Logmein Hamachi is a free VPN solution which supports Windows, Linux and OS X. Quite easy to install. It may be a little "overpowered" for your situation but should work.

Edit: Another, similar option is, look at their "Mini Wippien" option. Quote: "Unlike Wippien that combines two worlds together, miniVPN is small appliation that will give you benefit of having VPN without instant messaging capabilities."

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Here is the list of alternative apps for F2F / P2PVPN. – BBK Jan 4 at 11:42

If the host machines are all on the same network, you may be able to configure DHCP to assign the MAC addresses used by VirtualBox (or VMWare) VMs to a different 'virtual' network.

For example, say all your host machines run on You could configure DHCP to assign all computers with MAC addresses beginning with 80:00:27 to the network.

Hope this helps.

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