Virtualbox in Win7 bridged network no adapter

I won’t get into why, after 10+ years I’ve switched my work desktop from Linux to Windows 7, but suffice to say its been painful. I still need access to a local linux install for various reasons so where I used to run Windows in a VM under linux, I now need to run linux in a VM under Windows. I ran into a problem which Googling didn’t immediately solve and since there were other folks with a similar problem out there I thought I’d write it up.

  • I have a Windows 7 64bit host, with Virtualbox 5.1.28 r117968 (Qt5.6.2) installed.
  • I have a Broadcom NetXtreme 57xx network card on the host.
  • I couldn’t get the guest (an Ubuntu 16.04 VM) set up with a bridged network adapter.
  • It would work with NAT, but I needed the guest to be on the same network as the host.
    I’m used to doing this the other way around (Linux host / Windows guest) and haven’t had any problems.
  • In the Virtualbox Settings for the VM, under Network, for Adapter 1 in Attached to: I selected “Bridged Adapter”
  • The dropdown below that (Name:) was empty (it didn’t see my host’s Broadcom adapter)
  • This is because there was no service “VirtualBox NDIS6 Bridged Networking Driver” listed on the “VirtualBox Host-Only Ethernet Adapter”
  • I chose Install, Service, Add – and Windows knew that that service needed a driver, but the path under which it was searching for it was borked.
  • I took note that it was trying to find vboxnetlwf.inf but the path was pointing to a Windows Temp folder which no longer existed after the install of Virtualbox.
  • I navigated to that folder under:
    C:\Windows\System32\DriverStore\FileRepository\
    instead, and it installed fine and bridging worked!

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