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I have a Windows 8.1 Pro 64-bit machine, with an Intel Haswell i7 processor, and 8GB of RAM.

I installed the latest VirtualBox (4.3.6) and I'm trying to install a Linux guest. I've tried several Linux distribution ISOs (Mint16, Mint16-xfce, Fedora20, Kubuntu13.10), and they all get stuck right after the Live CD boots. I managed to install some of them on my VirtualBox on the Mac, so it's not the ISOs fault. Something is preventing the boot sequence. Any ideas?

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Are you trying to do the 64-bit or 32-bit Linux guests? Is virtualization turned on? What is the EXACT CPU model? Can you load a version of Windows on VirtualBox? – Canadian Luke Dec 30 '13 at 22:41
I'm trying 64-bit for the guests. Virtualization is turned on. CPU model is I7-4500U. Haven't tried Windows on VBox, but managed to install Linux on Hyper-V 9reason I'm not sticking to Hyper-V is the resolution limit). – Traveling Tech Guy Dec 30 '13 at 22:50
Try with a 32-bit guest, just for S&G – Canadian Luke Dec 30 '13 at 22:51
Do you have a hunch? I never had that problem before with VBox (as said I have a Win7 machine happily running Ubuntu64, as well as a Mac doing the same) so before I start downloading more ISOs, I wonder if there's something I may be missing. – Traveling Tech Guy Dec 30 '13 at 22:54
It's going to be the first thing I'd try. I never allocate more than 3GB of RAM anyways to my VMs, so I never use the 64-bit ISOs (except for testing purposes). – Canadian Luke Dec 30 '13 at 22:59
up vote 5 down vote accepted

Finally found the answer. It all hinges on Hyper-V and the fact that it's enabled by default in Windows 8.1 Pro (as well as in other Pro and server Windows versions). With Hyper-V running, other hypervisors (like VirtualBox, VMWare and Android emulator) are crippled.

You could, potentially, disable Hyper-V from the Windows Add/Remove Features dialog. But what if you use Hyper-V for development or testing (i.e. WP8 development)?

The solution is to boot Windows with Hyper-V turned off. And the easiest way to do it, is to create a new boot configuration, with Hyper-V off, and boot to it whenever you need to use VirtualBox.

There are several step-by-step guides on how to create a new boot configuration - this one has some screen shots.

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