I am running Oracle VirtualBox with Debian as guest OS on a Windows 7 host. I have installed Apache and specified the following two network adapters in VM:

  1. Bridge
  2. Host-only w/ the same IP set as below.

My interfaces network settings on the Debian VM are:

auto lo
iface lo inet loopback

allow-hotplug eth0
iface eth0 inet dhcp
auto eth1 
    iface eth1 inet static

which all seems to work well enough via ping test between guest and host. However, when I try to browse to my guest instance in a web browser I keep getting a 404 message. Any help would be appreciated.

Thinking that the ifconfig results my help, I will include those also here:

eth0      Link encap:Ethernet  HWaddr 08:00:27:7a:1a:35  
      inet addr:  Bcast:  Mask:
      inet6 addr: fe80::a00:27ff:fe7a:1a35/64 Scope:Link
      RX packets:252 errors:0 dropped:0 overruns:0 frame:0
      TX packets:19 errors:0 dropped:0 overruns:0 carrier:0
      collisions:0 txqueuelen:1000 
      RX bytes:25417 (24.8 KiB)  TX bytes:1765 (1.7 KiB)

eth1      Link encap:Ethernet  HWaddr 08:00:27:56:3d:90  
      inet addr:  Bcast:  Mask:
      inet6 addr: fe80::a00:27ff:fe56:3d90/64 Scope:Link
      RX packets:231 errors:0 dropped:0 overruns:0 frame:0
      TX packets:7 errors:0 dropped:0 overruns:0 carrier:0
      collisions:0 txqueuelen:1000 
      RX bytes:21945 (21.4 KiB)  TX bytes:578 (578.0 B)

lo        Link encap:Local Loopback  
      inet addr:  Mask:
      inet6 addr: ::1/128 Scope:Host
      UP LOOPBACK RUNNING  MTU:16436  Metric:1
      RX packets:0 errors:0 dropped:0 overruns:0 frame:0
      TX packets:0 errors:0 dropped:0 overruns:0 carrier:0
      collisions:0 txqueuelen:0 
      RX bytes:0 (0.0 B)  TX bytes:0 (0.0 B)
  • 404 is 'document not found' error, what are your apache logs saying on your Debian VM?
    – Drav Sloan
    Aug 31, 2013 at 21:26
  • Drav. This sounds like a good approach. Can you recommend which log to check? I am assuming it is one in /var/log Thanks.
    – geo derek
    Aug 31, 2013 at 21:47
  • Correct, by default Debian logs to /var/log/apache2, and you should find an error.log in there.
    – Drav Sloan
    Aug 31, 2013 at 21:55
  • I checked the error.log and the most recent messages in there are regarding PHP and Apache ".. resuming normal operations". I will add my ifconfig results as they may help folks in understanding my configuration. Again any help is appreciated.
    – geo derek
    Sep 1, 2013 at 1:10
  • What's the IP address of the address of the Windows host? If it is on the 192.168.1.x network, your ping and browser might not be hitting the VirtualBox. Easy test: power down the VirtualBox and try your ping again.
    – msw
    Sep 1, 2013 at 2:44

2 Answers 2


Successfully pinging the "powered off" VirtualBox is the give-away: the guest machine needs to be on a different IP sub-network than the host machine belongs to. VirtualBox will handle the routing between the guest network and the host network and provide a proper address and gateway to the guest with a DHCP server seen only by the guest.

You don't explain why you've added the static eth1 interface, but I'm guessing it is so you can reach the guest machine on a known address. Drop the static configuration, see what network the guest is assigned and then you can use that network (often 10.0..) for the provisioning of a static address if you need to afterwards.

The box that you are reaching at is living on the same subnet as the host and may well be a real physical device on your host's network.

  • I set up the static eth1 interface because I was following the instructions at blog.xoundboy.com/?p=586. In these instructions the author is explaining how to make a VM accessible by the windows host even when laptop is “offline”. When I drop the static config, as you suggest, I get just the DHCP issued IP, and this IP does work in a browser on the host machine. This is great but I am now at a loss then how to assign a static IP.
    – geo derek
    Sep 1, 2013 at 14:04
  • @geoderek I'm sorry, your question and that article have exceeded my knowledge of Windows networking. It does appear that you'd only need a bridged interface and if I was trying to hack this together, I'd probably grab the IP off the guest machine and add it to %sysdir%/etc/hosts but even if that works, its a kludge.
    – msw
    Sep 1, 2013 at 15:47

I ended up figuring this out by the following metnod. The IP you are going to give eth1 should be very similar to the IP auto-assigned by VirtualBox to the second adapter that was attached to. To see this IP go to File > Preference > Network > Edit (Host-only Network Details). Here you will see the IP that was auto-assigned to the Host for the second adapter. You will use this IP modifying the last octet to be different e.g. .10 instead of .1

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