Ubuntu on VMware

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This page has various tips about running Ubuntu as a VM on VMware hypervisor.


Use the kernel provided by the linux-virtual package & prepare for VMware tools.

aptitude install linux-virtual linux-headers-virtual build-essential


VMware Tools

Note: don't bother trying if running Hardy or newer - instead see the open-vm-tools section below.

The actual instructions are here!

Note: read this

After rebooting into the new virtual kernel, install the vm-tools.

Right-click on the VM and choose Install VMware Tools...

sudo mount /media/cdrom0
cd /tmp
tar xzvf /media/cdrom0/VMwareTools-1.0.4-56528.tar.gz
cd vmware-tools-distrib
sudo ./vmware-install.pl


Since Precise (12.04) this appears to work fine...

sudo aptitude install open-vm-tools

Earlier version of Ubuntu might not.

These are the instructions I came up with for installing open-vm-tools WITHOUT X11 on Hardy.

cd /tmp
wget http://internap.dl.sourceforge.net/sourceforge/open-vm-tools/open-vm-tools-2008.06.20-100027.tar.gz
tar xzvf open-vm-tools-2008.06.20-100027.tar.gz 
cd open-vm-tools-2008.06.20-100027/
aptitude install libproc-dev libicu-dev
(These next two patches assume you don't want the X crap...)
cd open-vm-tools-2008.06.20-100027
wget -O patch20080630 http://www.pastebin.org/pastebin.php?dl=47425
patch -p1 < patch20080630 
wget -O patch20080630-2 http://www.pastebin.org/pastebin.php?dl=47434
patch -p1 < patch20080630-2
./configure --without-x --without-dnet
make install

Time synchronization

Option 1) Don't install or run ntpdate or ntpd on the VM. Instead configure NTP on the Host and let the VMware tools handle synchronizing time from the Host.

Set this in the .vmx file:


The tools default to this mode.

Option 2) Install and run ntpdate or ntpd inside the VM. Configure the tools to NOT sync from the host. i.e.

sudo /usr/bin/vmware-toolbox-cmd timesync disable


Certain daemons you don't need and can be disabled ... smartd, pcmcia and the like.