Install VMWare-Tools Linux VM

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How to Install VMware Tools on a Freshly Installed Linux VM

Here are detailed instructions on how to install VMware Tools on a freshly installed Linux VM.
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  • All development libraries need to be installed.
  • Development tools such as g++, gcc, make, cmake, etc. must be installed.
  • Current version of Perl is required.
  • Kernel headers for your running version of Linux must be installed.
  • Familiarity of the usage of the command prompt, as all commands will be entered from the command line.
  • Root, aka "Super User", access to the virtual machine, either from VMWare or via SSH (Secure Shell)

Get the VMware Tools Files

  1. Start the process:
    1. Within your VM (Virtual Machine),
      move your mouse to the very top of your screen. If it's not already there, a toolbar will pull down.
      Click "Virtual Machine", and then click "Install VMware Tools".
      If you are in an Xwindows GUI (Graphical User Interface), a window usually pops up showing the contents of the device VMware is providing with the VMware tools archive.

  2. Mount the VMWare Tools partition so you can copy to your hard drive:
    1. This MUST be done as the "root" super user!
      Use the first command if you haven't setup sudoers.
      Use the second command if you have already set yourself up in sudoers.
      $ su - root
      $ sudo su - root
      Your command prompt should now have a # in it instead of a $, indicating you are now the root super user.

    2. If you are running a terminal in within an Xwindows GUI,
      a window usually pops up after you tell VMWare to install the tools, which means the system automatically mounted the partition containing the VMware Tools archive.

      If not, and you are in a command prompt only, you will need to find out what to mount and decide where to mount it.
      There are two methods of I know if to determine what device VMware is providing to mount which has the vmware-tools archive:
      # dmesg
      This might give you a clue.

      # cat /proc/diskstats
      and look for sr0, sdb, etc. It's usually sr0.

    3. Do the actual commands to mount the "device" that the "Install VMware Tools" selection should now be providing:

      Create a "mount point":
      # mkdir /mnt/vmware

      Assuming the previously discovered device is "sr0", mount the VMware Tools device:
      # mount /dev/sr0 /mnt/vmware

      Unmount the VMware Tools device:
      # umount /mnt/vmware

  3. Copy the VMware-X.X.X-XXX.tar.gz file to the root user's home directory (since we're doing this as "root"):
    # cp /mnt/vmware /root

Extract the Archive

  1. If not already in the "/root" home directory, type this to get there:
    # cd /root

  2. Extract the archive, replacing the X's with the actual archive numbers:
    # tar -xvzf VMwareTools-X.X.X-XXX.tar.gz

Run the VMware Tools installation script

  1. Again from the command line, make sure you in the correct directory:
    # cd /root/vmware-tools-distrib

  2. Start the installation script:

  3. Follow all prompts, accepting the defaults.

  4. When prompted for the path to the kernel headers, type:

  5. Continue installation script accepting defaults and ignoring any errors, as this is normal.

Reboot & Enjoy!

  1. At completion, reboot your VM and enjoy the new higher resolution and ability to
    copy and paste between virtual machine and physical host machine!

  2. Note: You may have to shrink the VM window, not minimize it, and then maximize it to enable full screen mode.