How to configure VirtualBox VM with 2 network adapters

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This post describes how to create a VM which has a connection to the internet and also to other VMs in the virtual network. The easiest way to achieve it would be to set the VMs to use a bridged network configuration. In some cases, it is not possible, because of the host’s network setup. I guess this has something to do with the dhcp configuration. A bit of background. I have an Ubuntu installation as the host and 2 Ubuntu Server virtual machines.

  • Install a new virtual machine
  • In networking settings, set the 1st network adapter to NAT. Set the 2nd adapter to host-only. In addition, a new virtual host-only network has to be created in Virtualbox preferences.
  • Start the VM
  • Running ifconfig, it can be seen that only 1 network interface is availabe, (two, if the loopback interface is counted)
  • Open /etc/network/interfaces, find the description for eth0, copy these lines and create the same description for eth1
  • Reboot VM
  • Now the VM has 2 network interfaces
  • Create a new VM and repeat the previous steps
  • Now both VMs have access to the Internet and can communicate between each other

Host-only mode allows VMs inside the host to communicate between one another but they can not be accessed from the outside world.

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