Setting up an IE6 image for VirtualBox

VirtualBox provides a great way to run IE browsers for testing during development.


Install it in the usual way(!) – probably something like:

sudo apt-get install virtualbox

(More detailed instructions at

Then grab the IE6 image from ModernIE:

Choose “Linux” as the testing OS, then “VirtualBox for Linux” as the virtualization platform.

The various flavours of IE and Windows OS should be shown – choose the appropriate one.

The image will download as an “.sfx” file. Give the file execute permissions (chmod +x filename.sfx), and run it (./filename.sfx)

It should create a, “.ova” image file.

Now start VirtualBox with the “.ova” file as the parameter (you’ll probably have to do this as a sudo command):

sudo virtualbox "IE6 - WinXP.ova" 

VirtualBox will offer to import the settings from the file – so, do that.

Select the VM, and click “Start” to run it. You should get a running Windows image with your selected IE version.

From the IE browser, you should be able to access sites running on your local machine as e.g. “”

2 thoughts on “Setting up an IE6 image for VirtualBox”

  1. If you get the blue screen of death and boot looping, start in safe mode (hit F8),
    pick IE usesr and start a command prompt.
    I needed to run “sc config intelppm start= disabled ” in XP Safe Mode.
    Some users also report running “sc config p3 start= disabled “.
    Then reboot.

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