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Storing VirtualBox machine on SD card


New Member
Does anyone have experience/advice on using an SD card to store the bulk of a virtual machine that I create with VirtualBox? I'm hoping I can just set the location for the virtual disk .vdi file to a path on the SD card, but am wondering if there will be any problems, performance or otherwise.

I know there's some recommendations on how to use SD cards to maximize their life by minimizing read or write frequency, so is there anything I should do when setting up my virtual machine in that regard? Type of storage controller, type of hard disk (I see there's a checkbox for "solid state drive" ), etc?

Thanks for any input.


Active Member
While I haven't tried it, I believe you could just enter a path on the SD card in Virtual box. The only problem I can see is the performance of the SD card is pretty poor and I don't think a VM hosted there would work very well.


It'll be slow.
If you can split the VM into an OS vdi and one or more data vdi's, stick the OS one on the SSD, the others on the SD and performance/usability might be bearable.
I'd not worry about trying to minimise read/writes to the SD.


New Member
You are not going to get the speeds you need to run any VM besides light linux off an SD card. For a class 10 SDXC card, you will only get about 10-30 Mbps, not enough for smooth operation other than simple transfer of data.

Your best bet will be to simply run the VM off a USB device. USB 2.0 runs at about 480 Mbps or preferably off a USB 3.0 device which can run up to 4.8 Gbps. Running it off a USB should provide you with enough bandwidth to run lightweight VMs without much bandwidth issues.