Oracle VM VirtualBox is an industrial-strength open source virtualisation tool that makes it easy to create virtual machines (VMs), simulated computers that run on your PC but act as though they were separate systems. It's a powerful capability that has many different applications.
If you'd like a closer look at Windows 10 before you upgrade, for instance, then you could install Microsoft's latest in a VM, then access it in a window on your XP or Vista desktop.
Or maybe you've upgraded to Windows 10 and find a favourite old app doesn't work any more? Create a Windows XP VM and you might be able to run it again.
VirtualBox can also be a useful security tool: if you download and test apps in a VM, then any malware you might encounter will be isolated from your main system.
And it's the perfect choice if you want to try out another operating system with the minimum of hassle. Right now you can install Google Chrome OS, all the mainstream Linux variants (2.4 and 2.6), OpenBSD, OS/2, ReactOS, SkyOS, DOS, and just about every version of Windows there's ever been. (Of course you'll need to have the system discs to hand.)
VirtualBox 4 included an interface redesign, making it easier to view and manage your virtual machines. VM displays can now be scaled, so you can reduce a window size by half (for instance) and still see everything that's going on. The ability to limit a VM's CPU and IO time means the program will be less of a drain on your system's resources, and there are a host of other performance optimisations and bug fixes available.
What's new in VirtualBox 6.0.2 (see changelog for more)?
This is a maintenance release. The following items were fixed and/or added:
User interface: fixed creation of desktop shortcuts for starting virtual machines (bug #18207)
User interface: allow the first run window to selecting host drives (bug #18230)
User interface: fixed attaching empty host optical drives (bug #18223)
User interface: implemented a new virtual optical disk creation window
USB: modified Linux backends to reset USB devices (previously, most guest attempts to reset USB devices were ignored)
PCnet: fixed a regression which caused some PCnet PCI guest drivers to not detect the emulated hardware (bug #18286)
Linux hosts: fixed conflict between Debian and Oracle build desktop files (bug #18264)
Linux and MacOS hosts: VirtualBoxVM command not accessible (bug #18257)
Windows guests: multiple monitor fixes with VBoxSVGA graphics
Windows guests: black screen with VBoxSVGA graphics when 3D is disabled (bug #18205)
Linux guests: fixed building drivers on SLES 12.4 (bug #18213)
Linux guests: fixed building shared folder driver with older kernels (bug #18238)
OS/2 shared folders: fixed write regression introduced in 6.0.0 GA