[VirtualBox] “Windows failed to start. Status: 0xc0000225″ When Installing Windows 7 64-bit


I had previously encountered installing a 64-bit Windows 7 operating system on VirtualBox in a 64-bit Fedora 17. Everything was set up nicely at first, but when I attempted to start booting the DVD via the VM to install the operating system, this error showed up:

Windows failed to start.
Status: 0xc0000225

This may be something to do with the settings, I’d figured. After digging through forums, I found the solution that would ensured the installation will go through. Read on to find out more.

Discussion on Some Settings

There are a couple of settings that you would need to know when performing emulation within a VirtualBox VM environment:

  • Chipset
    • PIIX3
      This is the default VirtualBox chipset settings. This chipset emulation ensures that you have a basic chipset that any operating systems prior to Windows 7 can run on. Based on the Intel PIIX3 chipset architecture, this emulation supports PCI and USB 1.0.
    • ICH9
      The ICH9 chipset is a new driver emulation that exists since the introduction of VirtualBox 4. This emulation is based on the Intel ICH9 chipset architecture; which supports PCI Express and USB 2.0 emulation. Operating systems such as Windows 7 and Mac OS X could not be installed unless this chipset is chosen.
  • Enable I/O APIC
    This setting allows more interrupt requests(IRQs) than the standard 16 IRQs (if disabled). IRQs are what make devices communicate with each other. The CPU handles the management of these requests to ensure that devices are handled accordingly and thus, allows your hardware to be better managed for lesser possibility of a system crash.This setting must be turned on if you are installing a 64-bit operating system.

The Fix for Installing Windows 7 64-bit

So after you read the above, I believe the answer to installing Windows 7 64-bit on VirtualBox is pretty self-explanatory. Just ensure that your chipset is set to ICH9 and the Enable I/O APIC setting is checked:

  1. Right click on the Windows 7 machine within the VirtualBox Manager, and choose Settings.
  2. Under the Motherboard tab in System, choose ICH9 under Chipset and place a check on Enable I/O APIC under Extended Features.

    VirtualBox Motherboard Settings for Windows 7 64-bit

Once the above is completed, you should be able to install Windows 7 64-bit in your VM as your playground!

Note: there are a few discussions on whether the change from PIIX3 to ICH9 really makes a difference to the installation. For me, this has worked thus far, so your mileage may vary.

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