Oracle announced just a few minutes ago that the first Beta build of the upcoming VirtualBox 5.1 virtualization software is available for testing for all supported platforms.

Just by taking a quick at the changelog of VirtualBox 5.1 Beta 1 (attached at the end of the article for reference), we can notice that the upcoming major version will be exciting for everyone involved in the virtual machine ecosystem, whether you’re a simple desktop user running Ubuntu or FreeBSD on a VM or a professional doing serious virtualization stuff for work.

While Oracle states in his latest blog post that the Beta 1 of VirtualBox 5.1 is a minor release, they also encourage users to take it for a test drive as it includes a large number of enhancements and fixes for the most annoying bugs and issues that have been reported since VirtualBox 5.0.

One of the things that caught our attention in this first test release of Oracle VM VirtualBox 5.1 is that the installer for Linux kernel-based operating system will no longer rely on the Dynamic Kernel Module Support (DKMS) framework for rebuilding the kernel modules, which is quite awesome because it will make things a lot easier when updating the kernel packages on your distribution.

Better Python 3 support, Qt5 porting, networking improvement

Among other interesting things coming to the VirtualBox 5.1 release, which should be out in the next few weeks, most probably after an RC (Release Candidate) build too, are better support for Python 3, porting of the GUI (Graphical User Interface) to the latest Qt5 technologies, and huge performance improvements thanks to the implementation of new APIC and I/O APIC (Advanced Programmable Interrupt Controller).

Other than that, there will support for Hyper-V paravirtualized debugging of Windows guests, the implementation of a NVMHCI-compatible storage controller, lots of EFI improvements, such as the ability to boot from USB (finally!), and dozens of other much-neede fixes. Again, check out the changelog below if you’re curious to know what exactly has been changed.

You can download Oracle VM VirtualBox 5.1 Beta 1 right now for GNU/Linux, Mac OS X, and Microsoft Windows operating system and taking for a test drive, but keep in mind that this is a pre-release version, not ready for production use.

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