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After you finished the Android installation as explained in my last post, you should follow the procedure below.
Configure Android ^
- Remove the virtual CD.
Before you reboot, you should remove the virtual CD in VirtualBox.
- Select Reboot and press OK.
After you reboot, you should see the GRUB menu. Press Enter or just wait until Android boots up.
- Select your language.
Use the cursor keys to select your language, move the cursor to the right to select “Start,” and press Enter.
- Skip WiFi selection.
We will use the Internet connection of the host running VirtualBox, so no WiFi needs to be selected here. You can also ignore the warning that will be displayed after you select Skip.
- Add a Google account.
I suggest you don’t use your own Google account for your lab environment. Create a new Google account and then proceed with the Android configuration. Note that you can also skip adding a Google account at this time.
Google might worry about the way you are signing in. In that case, you’ll have to provide a phone number for SMS or an automatic voice call.
- Select a location.
Next, you have to choose what kind of geo location. Note that even if your VM has no GPS, Android can use other means, such as your IP address, to estimate your location.
- Set the date and time.
If you allowed Google to determine your location, your date and time should be already configured correctly.
- Enter your name.
Perhaps you can consider using a dummy name. Google doesn’t have to know everything, right?
- Grant Google services.
At the end of this long procedure, you have to agree that Google can install updates.
- Select Finish.
Your setup is now complete. After you select Finish, the Android home screen should appear.
I found it quite interesting that the installation took much longer than a Windows installation even though Android is a much simpler OS. Below are a few tips on how to work with your Android VM under VirtualBox.
Mouse pointer not visible ^
If you click the “desktop” of your Android installation, you will notice that the mouse pointer disappears. I found that the mouse pointer is only visible if you disable mouse integration of the VirtualBox virtual machine. To do so, you have to press Host + I or click the Machine menu of your VM. By default, the VirtualBox host key is the right CTRL key. You probably know that you can change this default setting. It appears there is no way to disable mouse integration by default. This means that you always have to press the corresponding key combination after you booted the VM
Disable mouse integration
Black screen on your Android VM ^
If you don’t touch anything on your virtual tablet for a few seconds, the Android screen saver will kick in and the screen will go black. You can’t just press a key or click the mouse to wake up your Android VM. It appears the only way to turn on the virtual screen is by pressing Host + H or by clicking ACPI Shutdown on the Machine menu. Please don’t ask me why.
Black screen on VirtualBox Android VM
Shutting down Android ^
A phone or tablet can be turned off by pressing the power button. You can also just turn off the virtual machine in VirtualBox and, in most cases, your Android installation will survive. However, it is safer to shut Android down properly. Click the top border of your Android VM, drag down the menu, and click “Power off.”
Shut down Android VM
Creating a snapshot ^
The first thing you should do after the Android installation is to create a snapshot. You noticed that the installation for Android under VirtualBox is quite long-winded. Thus, before you mess up your new Android lab, you should save the current state. I recommend shutting down your Android VM first. Another option is to create a linked clone whenever you start a new test.
In my next post, I will show you how you can change the screen resolution of your Android virtual machine in VirtualBox.