v6.1 Windows Installation Instructions

Download and install VirtualBox

  • Download VirtualBox from here.
  • Double click on the downloaded executable file and click Next and Yes to install the default settings.

Download and install the Opal tutorial servers

Download the Opal servers (synthetic data are included)

  • Right click and open each of the Opal tutorial servers in a new window.
  • Select the download button and click download anyway.

Import the Opal tutorial servers into VirtualBox

  • To install each Opal tutorial server, select File from the top menu and then Import Appliance... , browse to each downloaded tutorial file and install.
  • When you are finished, the VirtualBox main interface should show the two Opal servers.

Configure the network

Setting up the VirtualBox network adapter

  • Select one of the Virtual Machines (VMs) and click on the orange cog settings on the top bar, right hand portion of the screen.

  • Inside that window and under the tab Network, ensure that
    • Under Adapter 1Enable Network Adapter is checked and it is Attached to: NAT.
    • Under Adapter 2Enable Network Adapter is checked and it is Attached to: Host-only Adapter.
  • Repeat this for the other VM by first selecting it on the list.


  • Next we need to ensure DHCP server is not enabled.
  • Click on File,... Host Network Manager, and a new window will pop up.

  • In the window, there should be one item with the name "Virtualbox Host-Only Ethernet Adapter"

  • In the furthest righthand column is the "DHCP Server". This should be unchecked- not enabled.
  • Next, rightclick on the name "Virtualbox Host-Only Ethernet Adapter", and select Properties.

  • This will give an options bar at the bottom of this window.

  • Ensure Configure Adapter Manually is checked and
    • IPv4 address: 192.168.56.1
    • IPv4 Network Mask: 255.255.255.0

Starting the Opal Servers

Start the Opal Servers

To start an Opal server, open VirtualBox ,click on a server and click on the green arrow that says Start (or just double click on the Opal server name).

  • If you are presented with more than one Operating System in the black 'Oracle VM VirtualBox' window select the first option by pressing enter on your keyboard.


The Opal web interface


  • Opal is running and ready if the opal login screen is available. You do not need to login; just check that a login webpage is available. 

  •  Should you require logging into the Opal web interface e.g. to upload your own data etc:


Install DataSHIELD client packages

Install R and Rstudio

  • Download and install R.

  • Download and install Rstudio Desktop Open Source edition.

Install the DataSHIELD client package (in R or R Studio)

  • Install DataSHIELD dependencies:
  • Install the dsBaseClient R packages by typing into R:

Shutting down the Opal Servers

When you have finished your analysis, to shutdown the Opal server:

  • click the cross at the top right of the window. This will give you a list of options for how to shutdown the machine:
  • Select Send the shutdown signal.


Keeping up to date

Please see our keeping up to date wiki page in the user/analyst support section.


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