Weird Chome/Chromium Rendering Problems in KDE 4.11.2 under VirtualBox

I recently upgraded to VirtualBox 4.3.4 on a Windows 7 host machine and noticed a bunch of strange rendering problems with Chrome/Chromium in Debian and Kubuntu Linux guest instances running the latest stable KDE 4.11.2.


  • Whenever Chrome opens a modal dialog box, it is rendered _below_ the active window (i.e. not visible). Because it’s modal, Chome appears to hang.
  • When the modal dialog is displayed, dragging the outer frame of the Chrome window shears: the tab remains in-place during drag and the frame moves. Releasing the drag snaps the client area of the tab back into the correct coordinates making the previously invisible modal dialog visible.
  • This same “shearing” (due to what I believe is a Z-order bug) is manifest in drop-down menus, and also when moving other non-Chrome app windows over the tab client area of a running Chrome instance. The client area of the active tab appears to remain pinned at the top of the Z-order.

I tried re-installing the VirtualBox guest additions, and even switched Linux trying to get out from underneath this problem. Finally, I tracked down some useful information:

The relevant tip is to modify the google-chrome.desktop file to add the –blacklist-accelerated-compositing option to the end of the exec lines (see first link above for details).

This is preferable to completely disabling VirtualBox 3D acceleration. I’ve only seen this problem with Chrome/Chromium (so far).


About Chris Russell
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1 Response to Weird Chome/Chromium Rendering Problems in KDE 4.11.2 under VirtualBox

  1. Rodrigo Nava says:

    not just in virtualbox, have this problem in chrome on kubuntu trusty on my hd.

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