VirtualBox '/etc/init.d/vboxdrv setup' issue

  • I have installed VirtualBox through the software centre, but when I try to start a VM, I get the following error:

    Kernel driver not installed (rc=-1908)

    The VirtualBox Linux kernel driver (vboxdrv) is either not loaded or there is a permission problem with /dev/vboxdrv. Please reinstall the kernel module by executing

    '/etc/init.d/vboxdrv setup'

    as root. If it is available in your distribution, you should install the DKMS package first. This package keeps track of Linux kernel changes and recompiles the vboxdrv kernel module if necessary.

    I already updated my dkms and installed linux-headers, but this /etc/init.d/vboxdrv doesn't exist.

    I have been googling but I can't find an answer.

    like others said, reinstall **"virtualbox-dkms"**

    This happened to me after kernel update (ubuntu). For me it was just: "sudo apt-get install virtualbox". Installation process created kernel module for me.

    The original post regards 12.10. If you are having this problem for 14.04, which may be more likely at the time of writing, use `` instead of the one in `Ubuntu Software Centre`. The doc has long winded instructions but the following link is a shorter read. If you ignore the part about HTTPS then it is brief.

  • Should peruse /var/log/vbox-install.log file to determine the issue. If the problem persists, you may want to download and install the latest v4.2.2 version directly from (for kernel 3.6.* and below). Good luck.

    there is no freaking log file.... lol, I will just try the download from that site, I will be back to you when thats done and tested.

    IC - no log file "can" be an issue. LOL

    ok, I purged all the stuff I had, downloaded it from that site, and it started nicely, I am now installing an os, thanks mate!

    Purging and installing the file from the `VirtualBox` official site did it for me. Thanks!

    Unfortunately it seems the VirtualBox package in the repos is faulty. Evidently no one tests these packages...

    Unfortunately even this does not work for me. I get the error: "Cannot install 'libpython2.7:i386'", but I already have libpython2.7 installed.

    the answer by Jason Zhu works for me

  • I also encountered this issue several times once I upgrade my linux kernel.

    What I did:

    sudo apt-get install linux-headers-`uname -r`

    Reconfigure dkms and load module:

    sudo dpkg-reconfigure virtualbox-dkms  
    sudo modprobe vboxdrv

    Then VirtualBox works. No computer reboot needed.

    Just install the linux-headers as you pointed out, then `sudo ./etc/init.d/vboxdrv setup` will take care of updating dkms.

    `modprobe vboxdrv` Tells me: `FATAL: Module vboxdrv not found.`

    @pinouchon Did `dpkg-reconfigure virtualbox-dkms` output any error messages?

    I have to to this every few weeks or so, it seems, as I upgrade my system. Any way to get it permanently fixed?

    @GarrettFogerlie Maybe in your case it worked, but the OP clearly specifies that he already installed the headers, so I assume you didn't read the question.

    sudo dpkg-reconfigure virtualbox-dkms

    Osm, worked like charm :D Thank you so0o much

    `sudo /etc/init.d/vboxdrv setup` didn't work for me (it was what VirtualBox suggested when it failed to restart a saved VM). `dpg-reconfigure` followed by `modprobe` did. (12.04 LTS, VirtualBox 4.1.12)

    This got my vm starting, but with a network failure. After I do these steps I also need to `sudo modprobe vboxnetflt`

    your answer is perhaps the most handy answer on the entire SE network to me, I've been using these commands, at least 4 times in the last 2 weeks

    On 2015.04 I get `/usr/sbin/dpkg-reconfigure: virtualbox-dkms is not installed`

    Just executing `sudo apt-get install virtualbox-dkms` works for me.

    I had the same problem on Manjaro 17. `sudo modprobe vboxdrv` solves the problem. More info on

  • Here's EXACTLY how to do it on 12.10:

    Make sure there are no traces of dkms, (virtualbox/ virtualbox-4.2), linux generic headers (..17):

    ***Replace virtualbox-4.2 with the version you have already installed. If you haven't installed it yet then proceed to step 2.

    1. sudo apt-get purge virtualbox-4.2 dkms linux-headers-$(uname -r)
    2. sudo apt-get install linux-headers-$(uname -r)
    3. sudo apt-get install virtualbox-4.2

    You MUST install the linux headers BEFORE virtualbox otherwise the VBox installation will error when trying to set up the vboxdrv section because the linux headers aren't installed.

    Thanks but when I download virtualbox directly from the site, I don't have to do anything but 'sudo dpkg -i virtualbox.deb'. Less work.

    then you are lucky! if you should need to mess about with linux headers at all then it's important to install them before virtualbox

    Worked for me, afters hours of frustration. I am running ubuntu 12.04.

    This method worked for me. Downloading directly from the site did not. Basically, the headers is what's missing it seems. After installing the headers, as described above, I just installed vbox normally through the software centre.

    Nice one Andre!

    I used "sudo apt-get install virtualbox" and it worked great. thanks

  • Reinstall "virtualbox-dkms"

    sudo apt-get install --reinstall virtualbox-dkms

    It worked for me.

  • I had the same problem and I solved with the installation of the kernel headers.

    sudo apt-get install linux-headers-`uname -r`

    After the installation of the headers, DKMS was set-up properly and Virtualbox just worked after a reboot.

    Still, there is no vboxdrv in /etc/init.d.

    Note: the package I initially installed was virtualbox (non ose):

    sudo apt-get install virtualbox

    Thanks, tried this before posting my question, but it didnt work. The answer I selected as "The answer" is selected because the install from the site worked, and I would not have thought of it, since I thought it were the same files.

    @Dr_Bunsen No problem :)! Installing the headers and rebooting worked for me, but maybe I had some other packages installed that made the difference (even if I installed vbox as one of the first packages after a clean installation of 12.10).

  • I'm on Ubuntu 12.04 64-bit and encountered exactly this problem. I did all the recommended stuff listed here (uninstall, re-install headers, dkms, etc) and still couldn't get it to work.

    What finally worked was going to the virtualbox website (, downloading the package and installing it via:

    sudo dpkg -i virtualbox-4.2_4.2.10-84104~Ubuntu~precise_amd64.deb

    Then I ran:

    sudo /etc/init.d/vboxdrv setup

    And it worked like a charm.

    top most answer says the exact same thing. Thanks anyway

    Just re-read the first post and you're right. But i had like 3 or 4 tabs open researching for the answer so I was skimming through posts and trying things out and I think I was mildly frustrated so I missed the second part of his answer. Anyway, I also posted this as a more thorough instruction for the beginner (like me) who can't remember simple stuff like how do I install a .deb package. Cheers :)

  • With Ubuntu 12.04 I was not able to solve it via standard repositories. I had to download Virtualbox from its website and use version 4.3

  • VirtualBox Installation

    Open the terminal and issue these commands for Ubuntu 12.10/Linux Mint:

    echo "deb $(lsb_release -sc) contrib" | sudo tee /etc/apt/sources.list.d/virtualbox.list
    wget -q -O- | sudo apt-key add -
    sudo apt-get update
    sudo apt-get install dkms virtualbox-4.2


  • what i found instead is that if you run

    # modprobe vboxdrv

    before running virtualbox, you will not have that sign

    so I just add


    in /


    which is equivalent to run

      'modprobe vboxdrv' 

    after system start

    Bad advice.. This is handeled by the `/etc/init.d/virtualbox` script. Adding it here makes it redundant and harder to maintain and manage.

  • 1) If you have not yet installed DKMS run this command

    sudo apt-get install virtualbox-dkms

    If is already installed resintallation should fix the problem

    sudo apt-get install --reinstall virtualbox-dkms

    2) After the (re)installation process you should see something similar to this

    vboxnetflt.ko: Running module version sanity check. - Original module - No original module exists within this kernel - Installation - Installing to /lib/modules/3.5.0-61-generic/updates/dkms/

    vboxpci.ko: Running module version sanity check. - Original module - No original module exists within this kernel - Installation - Installing to /lib/modules/3.5.0-61-generic/updates/dkms/


    DKMS: install completed. * Stopping VirtualBox kernel modules [ OK ] * Starting VirtualBox kernel modules [ OK ] Setting up virtualbox-qt (4.1.12-dfsg-2ubuntu0.10) ... Processing triggers for libc-bin ... ldconfig deferred processing now taking place

    3) Close VirtualBox and wait for at least 10 seconds for the daemon to shutdown.

    4) Open VirtualBox again and Start the machine, it should be fixed

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Content dated before 6/26/2020 9:53 AM

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