How to Get to BIOS on VirtualBox

By Jason Artman

Oracle VM VirtualBox has the ability to use Extensible Firmware Interface rather than the traditional Basic Input/Output System to boot a virtual machine. Mac computers with Intel processors use EFI to boot. While 64-bit versions of Windows support EFI, no 32-bit or 64-bit Windows virtual machine is able to boot using EFI in VirtualBox. If you attempt to start a VirtualBox virtual machine and see a screen titled "EFI Shell" rather than the operating system you expected, change the virtual machine's configuration to use BIOS instead of EFI.

Step 1

Launch Oracle VM VirtualBox from the "All Programs" section of the Start menu. The left side of the main VirtualBox window displays a list of your virtual machines.

Step 2

Right-click the virtual machine that you want to toggle from EFI to BIOS. Select "Settings" on the context menu. A new window titled after the name of your virtual machine appears.

Step 3

Click the "System" heading on the left side of the window.

Step 4

Click the "Motherboard" tab at the top of the window.

Step 5

Remove the check from the box labeled "Enable EFI (Special OSes Only)."

Step 6

Click "OK" and double-click the virtual machine to turn it on.