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Testing with VirtualBox on OS-X

I am using OS-X as a development platform for a web application (Apache, Django, Satchmo, etc.). Active development is done with Chrome, Firefox, and Safari, but I need to test and debug with various IE versions as well.

To do this on a single machine (my iMac), I installed Oracle's Virtualbox virtual machine software. I then installed Windows XP as a guest OS on virtualbox.

If I'm running Apache and my application on my iMac, how to configure Virtualbox/XP so that IE can access my OS-X application? The default install uses NAT, which means that XP can't see my OS-X machine.

To remedy that, go to the Virtualbox Network configuration. Change the attachment mode ('Attached to:') to 'Bridged Adapter'. Then select the active network adapter on OS-X. I am connected using wi-fi, so under 'Name:' I choose 'en1:Wi-Fi (AirPort)'. Once this is done, IE in XP can access my web server.

Use ifconfig to determine the IP address of the OS-X network adapter you are using. Use this IP address in the URL you use in IE. You can, of course, update /etc/hosts (or whatever) on Windows XP to point to this address, which will allow you to use your desired domain name in the URL instead of an IP address.

If you have problems check your console log to see what's going on. You'll have to be sure that you have web sharing enabled in your OS-X settings, or the OS-X firewall will not let IE connect to Apache.