YouTube 360 Videos and 360 Images on Linux in VM (VMware vs VirtualBox)

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[Originally posted May 24, 2016, by codetricity]

When using Linux in a VM as a development environment for the THETA, people often encounter problems testing 360 video and images. Here is what works:

  • Linux in VMware Player VM with 3D hardware acceleration on Firefox. YouTube 360 works with navigation. Akokubo JavaScript Viewer code works on FireFox.

  • Linux in VirtualBox VM with 3D hardware acceleration disabled. YouTube 360 video works in VM, but things are generally slow.

The following also works in a Linux VM (both VirtualBox and VMware) and is covered in the Unofficial API Guide:

  • dual network interfaces to connect to the THETA and the Internet at the same time from inside of the VM (using NAT)
  • command line access to THETA from bash shell with curl
  • extensive Python examples to access THETA from Linux, including downloading media
  • JavaScript examples to access THETA from Linux with NodeJS
  • HoloBuilder for editing 360 image spheres and connecting them (cloud-based)

The following does not work in a Linux VM (as of 2/28/2016). If you get it to work, send me a note.

  • YouTube or other 360 image navigation with Chrome
  • Stitching videos into equirectangular mode on Linux
  • Viewing 360 videos on Linux from local media, not on YouTube

Based on the VMware advantages with 3D acceleration, it looks like VMware is a better choice than VirtualBox for THETA development as of Feb 2016.

The following has not been tested on Linux in a VM, but should work: