On my Ubuntu host I have my local webserver. I installed VirtualBox and Debian as a guest.

I would like the Debian guest to be able to hit my webserver running on my Ubuntu host (for example, I just type http://localhost:8080/ in the browser under Debian).

How can this be done?


7 Answers 7


Enable ONE network adapter. Set it to NAT and start your machine. Don't need to configure anything.

On guest machine's browser type which will show you the same content as "localhost" in the host OS. is the "default gateway" for NAT connections and your guest OS' IP is

Of course you can set a "HOST-ONLY" or an "Internal Network" which will allow you another advanced configurations. I recommend to stay with NAT.



  • 1
    "Enable ONE network adapter". Where is this done?
    – jshen
    May 8, 2014 at 16:39
  • 1
    Note: If you have name-based virtual hosts configured in apache on your host machine, then you can access them by simply creating a mapping in the guest's machines hosts file for yourvirtualhostname.local (or whatever)
    – User
    Aug 22, 2014 at 1:12
  • @User are you sure that your last comment will work? I have a virtual host on my VB host set to http://example.dev, and mapping to anything on my VB guest doesn't help access it at all. Jan 6, 2015 at 11:36
  • 1
    @ТомицаКораћ it does work. For example see: askubuntu.com/questions/36183/… however, you probably should open a separate question to get this solved.
    – User
    Jan 6, 2015 at 17:11
  • 1
    "Enable ONE network adapter" means under the network settings of your virtual machine (within VirtualBox) enable only one of the adapters. Got me a bit confused when I first read it.
    – Marquez
    Dec 16, 2015 at 19:37

Also a point to make when using the ip address of is if you're using MAMP for instance add the port number :8888 so the full address reads


The easiest way of allow uninterrupted access to your VirtualBox Guest machine is to set the network device as a 'bridge' to your eth0 on to your LAN.

The Guest machine will grab a LAN IP via DHCP from your router.

  • To clarify: This is a setting in the client app. It worked for me—it just took me a while to realise it, because IE was too stupid to assume I wanted an HTTP connection when I typed an IP address and port into the address bar. Nov 19, 2015 at 6:43

What I found fixed the issue for me was making sure that the windows VirtualHost-Only adapter was set to the .1 address for the ip range so my virtual box host only adapter was but the ip for the Windows adapter is


If solution by @Melvyn does not work, as an alternative you can set you network adapter to be bridged.
Go to Settings -> Network -> then change Attached to to Bridged Adapter.

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You should be able to call parent by it's hostname or external IP address you can get it by going to Command prompt and typing ipconfig /all enter image description here

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Update If you are debugging with Visual Studio and using IIS Express.

go to C:\Users\[uesername]\Documents\IISExpress\config\applicationhost.config

find your website in <configuration>/<system.applicationHost>/<sites>/<site> (name can be deceptive try checking location on the disk in physicalPath attribute)

then add into <bindings> section new binding

    <binding protocol="http" bindingInformation="*:50766:localhost" />
    <binding protocol="http" bindingInformation="*:50766:48qzr12" />

where bindingInformation is *:[port]:[machineName]

Hope this saves you some time.


Guests can connect to hosts, and hosts to guest, but not out of the box.

Here is a scenario. Suppose you have a host, and two guests (in my case, Windows host (HOST), and a Linux (GUEST1) and Windows (GUEST2) virtual image): Suppose further more, you run a website on one guest (in my case, http://localhost:8081, on the Windows GUEST2). I run both guests in NAT networking mode.

HOST -> GUEST2 : Use NAT port forwarding rule, on 8081. Go to networking of the virtual guest (GUEST2), and add the rule there. So, now on the host, http://localhost:8081 will reach the GUEST2 website.

GUEST1 (linux) -> HOST(W10) -> GUEST2(W10) website on port 8081

Go to your other GUEST1, in my case, Linx, run netstat -rn:

Destination     Gateway         Genmask         Flags   MSS Window  irtt Iface         ****         UG        0 0          0 enp0s3   U         0 0          0 enp0s3     U         0 0          0 enp0s3     U         0 0          0 docker0

Now, your website can be reached on the gateway, That will trigger the port NAT from HOST to GUEST2 again.


Well you can get Debian to hit your webserver, but not using localhost. You'll have to use the IP address of the Ubuntu host.

Assuming the guest OS is connected to the network, to grab the IP open up a terminal and type ifconfig. Should look something like

  • Hi! Sorry for too late reply. ifconfig on my host shows for eth0. When I enter this ip in firefox in guest it is trying to connect for a while and then connection is terminated: "The server at is taking too long to respond"... So what should I try next? Thanks in advance.
    – Maxim
    May 24, 2010 at 17:52

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