Who Needs a Virtual Machine (Virtual Box) ?
When one tries various distros (operating systems like windows, mac or Linux), one may become attached with a particular program which is hard to copy in other distros. Instead of going through the complexity and pain of dual booting, you can easily use virtual machine to run practically any software.
Looking at the vulnerabilities found in Microsoft Windows, I would be extremely careful with it running on my main system. I am much more comfortable keeping Windows in a contained virtual environment. That way, even if it is compromised, it will not damage my entire system or data and will only affect the limited set of files it was accessing.
VMs also can be useful for those non-Linux users who want to play with Linux or who want to migrate to it but don't want to jump shark by formatting the OS they were used to and switching to Linux. Virtual machines get these users comfortable with Linux, so they can make the switch with confidence when they are ready. And, you can be running Linux “inside” your shiny Mac OS X or Windows 10.
The best thing about virtual machines is that I can run multiple Linux distributions on the same hardware, without having to reboot to switch between distros. It’s extremely important for me to run various distros and keep an eye on them. And it’s even more important to be well versed with all major distros instead of being “vendor-locked” or totally dependent on any one. Using VMs, I can also run different desktop environments on the same system without having to log out to change the environment.
If you are aspiring to become a system admin or developer, you certainly don’t want to know only one distro; you must be an expert in any operating system; you never know which OS your employer or client would be using. You can’t say “sorry, I know only XXXX.” If you are a developer, you need different distributions to test your applications.
You can clearly see that there are many advantages of using virtual machines. The biggest advantages of using virtualization instead of multi-booting is efficiency. One wastes way too much time in formatting hard drives and switching between distros. With virtual machines, you can start a new virtual machine for a distro without affecting your work; it’s as easy as opening a new application.
It’s “virtually” impossible for many people to have six physical machines, which waste financial resources and electricity and take up space. Instead of buying six physical machines, one would rather invest in more RAM and a multicore processor that can handle more virtual machines. One can run almost a dozen distros (including Windows) on the same machine; and there is no downtime!!!
The reason we go for VirtualBox is that it’s extremely easy to use. It has tons of features and functionalities that can be easily accessed without any hard-core technical knowledge. The biggest advantage is its cross-platform support -- you can install Virtual Box on Linux, Windows, and Mac OS X. Obviously we go for the open source and free one.