Windows – Win Key in VirtualBox Guest is also captured by Host

autohotkeyUbuntuvirtual machinevirtualboxwindows

I have a fresh install of Windows 10 Home x64. This machine is used as a host for a VirtualBox VM (Ubuntu 16.04.1 x64).

All nice and good until I realized that when I press the win key on guest (fullscreen) it opens the dash menu as expected but it also opens the windows start menu. It also happens to open the start menu on host when I press win + d to show desktop on guest. Basically, any combination of win + anything opens the start menu on host which is really annoying.

Here are some links related to my problem but none of them seems to fix my problem: 1 2 3

I need to mention that I don't want a solution like, replace the super key in guest or permanently disable super key on host, or just get rid of VirtualBox and use VMware. I just need it to work as expected.

I have tried the AutoHotKey on host but it seems that is not applying the script for VirtualBox. It works if I restrict some key to Notepad but using the same script for VirtualBox only creates a delay for that key.

Any help will be highly appreciated!

Best Answer

I finally found a solution, so I will answer my own question. It seems that if I start the virtual machine as Detachable Start, the win key or win key + any other key will not be captured by host.

However, the current version of the user manual ( says that:

Starts a VM with detachable UI (technically it is a headless VM with user interface in a separate process). This is an experimental feature as it lacks certain functionality at the moment (e.g. 3D acceleration will not work).

Most probably, the user manual is currently outdated considering that 3D acceleration is working properly with detachable start. Also, I haven't found any bug until now (1 day of usage) using the detachable start. My current version of VirtualBox is 5.1.2

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