How to enable EFI in VirtualBox virtual machine

If you want to use Windows 11 or any Linux distribution on VirtualBox, you must enable EFI or Extensible Firmware Interface. Although VirtualBox enables this setting automatically when you choose the OS, it might not do that at times. In such moments, you can follow this step-by-step guide to turn on EFI in VirtualBox virtual machine.

How to enable EFI in VirtualBox virtual machine

What is EFI? What is the difference between UEFI and EFI?

Before knowing about EFI, you must know about UEFI. UEFI or Unified Extensible Firmware Interface is the substitute to BIOS. In other words, BIOS and UEFI help users set up the computer hardware and tweak them as per requirements.

Talking about the EFI, it is a modern version of UEFI, and it helps you overcome the HDD limit of 2.2TB, which was there in UEFI in the initial days. In other terms, EFI is a storage partition that goes with UEFI or Unified Extensible Firmware Interface.

That being said, if you want to UEFI, you have to use the EFI as well. Whether you want to use it for installing Windows, Ubuntu, Debian, Zorin OS, or anything else. As said earlier, VirtualBox enables this setting automatically. However, at times, it might not do that due to some conflicts or when it doesn’t recognize the ISO correctly.

Therefore, you can enable EFI from the settings panel. Whether you use Windows 11 or Linux distributions, you can follow the same guide. However, you must enable it for each virtual machine since it doesn’t work across all platforms.

How to enable EFI in VirtualBox virtual machine

To enable EFI in VirtualBox virtual machine, follow these steps:

  1. Open VirtualBox on your computer.
  2. Select a virtual machine.
  3. Click on the Settings button.
  4. Switch to the System tab.
  5. Tick the Enable EFI checkbox.
  6. Click the OK button.
  7. Restart VirtualBox.

To learn more about these steps, continue reading.

First, you need to open the VirtualBox on your computer. Then, select the virtual machine for which you want to enable the EFI. Click on the virtual machine to select and click the Settings button visible in the top menu bar.

Alternatively, you can right-click on the virtual machine on the left-hand side and select the Settings from the context menu.

Then, switch to the System tab and tick the Enable EFI (special OSes only) checkbox.

Click the OK button and restart the VirtualBox.

What is Enable EFI in VirtualBox?

The Enable EFI option in VirtualBox lets you turn on EFI on your virtual machine. If you want to use Linux distributions or Windows 11 on VirtualBox virtual machine, you must enable EFI. To do this, you need to open the virtual machine settings, go to System, and check the Enable EFI box.

Does VirtualBox support EFI?

Yes, VirtualBox supports EFI for special operating systems only. For example, if you want to enable EFI for Ubuntu or any other Linux distributions, you can do that. For turning it on, you can open the Settings, go to System and tick the Enable EFI checkbox.

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