Nested virtualization(VirtualBox, HyperV) – crashing during Win 7 32-bit install

Michael12345 asked:

We have a co-located HyperV server that hosts several Windows Server 64-bit 2008 R2 guests. One of these guests is our Continuous Integration (CI) build server.

I have a legacy piece of software (CodeCharge 4.3)that I want to incorporate into our build pipeline that has no commandline interface thus only supports building using UI automation. I understand this will fail unless it’s actually running as an interactive logon to the desktop (i.e. not over RDP, or a background session).

A way to deal with this is to install a virtual OS on the build server, then have your build run inside that. This allows the OS running the build to think someone is physically logged into it, and all the UI Automation stuff works even if it’s attached to a disconnected (but still logged in) RDP session.

I’ve installed Oracle Virtual Box into our build server OS. I tried to install Win7 64-bit into VirtualBox, but it would not install complaining about virtualization needing to be enabled in the BIOS.

Fair enough, I can use 32-bit. Win7 32-bit install starts and gets partway through, then the build server OS itself crashes.

To Summarize

HOST1 – HyperV

GUEST1/HOST2 – Windows Server 2008 R2 64-bit, housing VirtualBox

GUEST2 – Windows 7 32-bit

When I attempt to install Windows 7 in GUEST2, GUEST1 crashes and reboots. I can only assume this is a BSOD which I don’t see due it being a virtual instances itself, I’m logged in to via RDP.

Am I crazy nesting OSes like this? Or should it work in theory but I just have something set wrong somewhere?

My answer:

Hyper-V does not support nested virtualization, full stop.

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