<

HOW TO: Install VMware Tools for Linux on a VMware Linux virtual machine on a VMware vSphere Hypervisor 5.1 (ESXi 5.1) Host Server

Published on
46,865 Points
14,965 Views
4 Endorsements
Last Modified:
Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE^2)
MVE^2, Expert of the Year 2016-2011, Scribe 2016-2012, Author of the Year 2016,2013-2012 VMware vExpert 2016-2011 27 years of experience.
In my previous 26 VMware Articles, most featured Intermediate VMware Topics. My next series of articles will concentrate on topics for the VMware Novice; this is the nineth article in this series.

If you would like to read the other articles in this series,  they are listed here for your convenience.

Part 1: HOW TO: Install and Configure VMware vSphere Hypervisor 5.1 (ESXi 5.1)

Part 2: HOW TO: Connect to the VMware vSphere Hypervisor 5.1 (ESXi 5.1) using the vSphere Client

Part 3: HOW TO: Create an ISO CD-ROM/DVD-ROM image (*.iso), and MD5 checksum signature, for use with VMware vSphere Hypervisor 5.1 (ESXi 5.1)

Part 4: HOW TO: Upload an ISO CD-ROM/DVD-ROM image to a VMware datastore for use with VMware vSphere Hypervisor 5.1 (ESXi 5.1) using the vSphere Client, and checking its MD5 checksum signature is correct.

Part 5: HOW TO: Enable SSH Remote Access on a VMware vSphere Hypervisor 5.1 (ESXi 5.1)

Part 6: HOW TO: Create your first Linux Virtual Machine on a VMware vSphere Hypervisor 5.1 (ESXi 5.1) Host Server

Part 7: HOW TO: Create your first Windows Virtual Machine on a VMware vSphere Hypervisor 5.1 (ESXi 5.1) Host Server

Part 8: HOW TO: Install VMware Tools for Windows on a VMware Windows virtual machine on a VMware vSphere Hypervisor 5.1 (ESXi 5.1) Host Server

In this series of basic VMware articles for the Novice, I'll be showing you the basic VMware skills required to install, configure and deploy virtual machines using VMware's FREE VMware vSphere Hypervisor (ESXi).

In this article we will show you HOW TO: Install VMware Tools for Linux on a VMware Linux virtual machine on a VMware vSphere Hypervisor 5.1 (ESXi 5.1) Host Server. This procedure can be followed to install VMware Tools on any Linux Virtual Machine provided they are supported by the version of VMware vSphere. You may want to consult the the VMware Hardware Compatibility Lists or HCL, see here to check your operating system is compatible with VMware vSphere.


What are VMware Tools?

VMware Tools are a suite of utilities that enhances the performance of the virtual machine's guest operating system and improves management of the virtual machine. Installing the VMware Tools package will greatly enhance graphics and mouse performance in your virtual machine. Without VMware Tools installed in your guest operating system, guest performance lacks important functionality. You can check if you have VMware Tools installed by checking the Summary of your virtual machine using the vSphere Client if using VMware vSphere 4.x or 5.x, or ESX/ESXi 4.x, 5.x. If VMware Tools are installed VMware Tools will read OK, an IP Address and DNS hostname will appear in the Summary page.

VMware Tools status in Summary

1. Connect to the VMware vSphere Hypervisor 5.1 (ESXi 5.1) or vSphere vCenter Server using the vSphere Client

Please refer to my EE article on HOW TO: Connect to the VMware vSphere Hypervisor 5.1 (ESXi 5.1) using the vSphere Client
InventoryClick the Inventory icon.

2. Checking if VMware Tools is installed in the Virtual Machine

Click the Host Server in the Inventory, this is the small server box, with the IP Address [192.168.10.128] in this tutorial.
Click Host in Inventoryfollowed by the Virtual Machines configuration tab.
Virtual Machine TabRight Click the location marked with the red arrow, the name field. This allows us to add other useful columns, which will show the status of VMware Tools, and whether VMware Tools is installed in the virtual machine. This feature shows us the information for all virtual machines running on this host.
 select required fieldsPlace a tick box and select IP Address, VMware Tools Running State and VMware Tools Version Status, this will enable additional columns.
Additional Columns Enabled
If VMware Tools is installed and running, VMware Tools Running Status states Running, and an IP Address is displayed. Also the VMware Tools Version Status states - Current. If VMware Tools is not installed, please continue with the following steps.

As you can see from the above information VMware Tools has been installed on our Windows virtual machine,  "My First Windows VM", but VMware Tools has not been installed on "My First Linux VM" yet. Please see my previous EE Article Part 8: HOW TO: Install VMware Tools for Windows on a VMware Windows virtual machine on a VMware vSphere Hypervisor 5.1 (ESXi 5.1) Host Server to install VMware Tools on a Windows virtual machine. To install VMware Tools on Linux, please continue with this tutorial.

3. Interacting with the Virtual Machine

Right-Click the virtual machine "My First Linux VM" and Select Power On, or select the virtual machine  "My First Linux VM", and type CTRL-B to power on the virtual machine, the virtual machine should automatically boot the operating system. Then select the Open Console function so you can interact with the virtual machine. You may find it easier if you Right-Click the virtual machine "My First Linux VM" and Select Open Console.
Open Consoleand then selecting the Power On button on the ribbon bar
Power On Virtual Machine Buttonthe virtual machine should automatically boot the operating system. The Open Console function is similar to the Keyboard/Video Machine (KVM) function in a datacentre, which allows you to toggle between console screens of computers, it allows you to interact with the virtual machine, with keyboard and mouse movements, and displays the screen. The Linux console screen will be displayed.
Linux Console Screen

4. Login to the virtual machine

Select your username and enter your password to access the virtual machine. You may need to change focus, by clicking the virtual machine desktop with the mouse.

Password Entered
Linux Console Screen Password EnteredAfter a successful login, the Linux desktop will appear.
Linux Console Screen Desktop

5. Installing VMware Tools for Linux

There are many different methods to installing VMware Tools on Linux, so this could be considered as the "Andy Method of installing VMware Tools on a Linux VMware Virtual Machine". In one of my early Experts Exchange articles, I created a tutorial video of the same procedure here - HOW TO: Tutorial Video - Install VMware Tools for Linux on a VMware Linux virtual machine, I will be following the same method in this article.

Select VM > Guest > Install/Upgrade VMware Tools
    Select VM > Guest > Install/Upgrade VMware ToolsThis process connects a VMware Tools for Linux  (linux.iso) iso file image to the CD-ROM device in the virtual machine. If VMware Tools fails to run, ensure that your virtual machine has a CD-ROM device added. At the Install VMware Tools dialogue box, click OK
Install VMware Tools PromptSelect the terminal application in Linux.
Linux terminalEnsure you virtual machine is connected to the internet. We will need to connect to the internet to update the virtual machine and download application packages. I've found if you update you Linux distribution after installing VMware Tools, you can break the VMware Tools installation.

Type the following command in the console
sudo apt-get update
the above commend will contact the distribution servers, for Ubuntu Linux updates.sudo apt-get updateType the following command in the console to upgrade the Ubuntu Linux virtual machine with updates available.
sudo apt-get upgrade
sudo apt-get upgradeSelect Y to upgrade the patches.
sudo apt-get upgrade completeWhen the upgrades have been completed type
sudo mkdir /tmp/tools
sudo mkdir /mnt/cdrom

at the console, these are folders we will use in this tutorial for the installation of VMware Tools.
sudo mkdirtype sudo mount /dev/cdrom /mnt/cdrom to mount the CD-ROM with VMware Tools.
sudo mountlist the contents of the CD-ROM with ls -al /mnt/cdrom, the file VMwareTools-9.0.0-782409.tar.gz contains the VMware Tools installer.
VMware Tools cdrom contentsCopy the file from the CD-ROM, to the /tmp/tools folder, type the command
cd /mnt/cdrom
sudo cp VMwareTools-9.0.0-782409.tar.gz /tmp/tools

Check the VMware Tools gziped tar ball file has been copied into /tmp/tools, type ls -al /tmp/tools
check toolsExtract the VMware Tools gziped tar ball file, by typing the following sudo tar zxvf VMwareTools-9.0.0-782409.tar.gz, and wait, this can take a few minutes to extract. (enter you password when prompted!), as the files are extracted the files will scroll up the screen.
VMware Tools extractionCheck the current folder for the new folder called vmware-tools-distrib using the command ls -al. Change directory using the cd command, and type cd vmware-tools-distrib.
check foldergcc, make and the kernel headers of the running kernel are later required by the VMware Tools installation to compile the drivers for you Linux distribution, so install first, otherwise tools installation will fail. To check and install you have the binaries gcc and make type
sudo apt-get install gcc
sudo apt-get install make
sudo apt-get install linux-headers-generic

at the terminal window. Execute the VMware Tools installation script, by typing the command sudo ./vmware-install.pl
At the Creating a new VMware Tools installer database Installing VMware Tools prompt, just hit the enter key to accept the defaults to the following paths
/usr/bin
/etc
/etc/init.d
/usr/sbin/
/usr/lib/vmware-tools
VMware Tools Install1Answer yes to creating the folder /usr/lib/vmware-tools, this can take a few minutes to complete.
Answer YesAt the which directory do you want to install the documentation files, hit enter.
Hit enter at the documentation promptHit enter at the /usr/share/doc/vmware-tools prompt, to create the folder.
Hit enter at the /usr/share/doc/vmware-tools prompt, to create the folder.The VMware Tools installer, will report if the installation has been sccessful.
This will complete the installation of VMware Tools 9.0.0 build-782409 for Linux.
VMware Tools Install successfullBefore running VMware Tools for the first time, it needs to be configured. At the prompt to run the configuration program /usr/bin/vmware-config-tools.pl hit enter, to run the configuration program.
VMware Tools Install successfullThe following screen will be displayed as VMware Tools initializes
VMware Tools InitalizingIf you require the  VMware FileSystem Sync Driver select - yes, this will ensure third party backup products, obtain a consistent backup.
VMware Tools Sync DriverHit enter to accept the default path for gcc.
VMware Tools Compile optionsHit enter to accept the default path for kernel headers.
VMware Tools Compile kernel headers(if your kernel headers are missing, you will need to issue a sudo apt-get install linux-headers-generic command).
Hit enter to accept the default folder. The drivers will be compiled
VMware Tools Compile driversVMware Tools Compile drivers continuedVMware Tools Compile drivers continuedVMware Tools Compile drivers continuedVMware Tools Compile drivers finishedIf you are using VMware Workstation or VMware Player, you may want to enable and install the VMware Host Guest Filesystem driver, which allows the exchange of files between host and virtual machine. This feature is not supported in VMware vSphere. In this tutorial, the Host is VMware vSphere, so we will not be installing the VMware Host Guest Filesystem driver, so select the default action - no.
VMware Tools Compile no driversvmblock is a feature which allows cut and paste between Host computer and VMware Workstation or VMware Player virtual machine. This feature is not supported in VMware vSphere. In this tutorial, the Host is VMware vSphere, so we will not be installing the vmblock driver, so select the default action - no.
VMware Tools Compile no vmblockAs this is a production machine, we will not be installing any experimental VMware, automatic building kernels at machine boot. Accept the default no, but hitting Enter.
VMware Tools Compile no experimental kernel driversThe configuration of VMware Tools 9.0.0 build-782409 for Linux has been completed successfully, when the following screen is displayed.
VMware Tools CompletedYou must restart your X session before any mouse or graphics changes take effect.

You can now run VMware Tools command box, by invoking sudo "/usr/bin/vmware-toolbox-cmd" from the command line.

Unlike in a Microsoft Windows operating system, and computer restart is not required to initialize VMware Tools.

If you now repeat Step 2 above Checking if VMware Tools is installed in the Virtual Machine
VMware Tools Installed and Current    VMware Tools Installed and CurrentAn IP address is now displayed, which is the IP address of the virtual machine, VMware Tools Running Status - Running, and VMware Tools Version Status - Current

Congratulations, you have successfully Installed VMware Tools for Linux on a VMware Linux virtual machine on a VMware vSphere Hypervisor 5.1 (ESXi 5.1) Host Server


****************************************************************************
Thank you for reading my article, please leave valuable feedback. If you liked my VMware article and would like to see more Articles from me, please click the Yes button near the: Was this article helpful? at the bottom of this article just below and to the right of this information. Thank You. Do not forget if you have a question about this article or another VMware, Virtualisation, Windows Server 2012 question, why not post a Question for me and the other Experts Exchange Experts in the VMware, Virtualisation, Windows 2008, Windows 2012 Zones. I look forward to hearing from you. - Andy :- twitter @einsteinagogo
****************************************************************************
4
Comment
0 Comments

Featured Post

PRTG Network Monitor: Intuitive Network Monitoring

Network Monitoring is essential to ensure that computer systems and network devices are running. Use PRTG to monitor LANs, servers, websites, applications and devices, bandwidth, virtual environments, remote systems, IoT, and many more. PRTG is easy to set up & use.

Join & Write a Comment

Teach the user how to delpoy the vCenter Server Appliance and how to configure its network settings Deploy OVF: Open VM console and configure networking:
Teach the user how to install and configure the vCenter Orchestrator virtual appliance Open vSphere Web Client: Deploy vCenter Orchestrator virtual appliance OVA file: Verify vCenter Orchestrator virtual appliance boots successfully: Connect to the …

Keep in touch with Experts Exchange

Tech news and trends delivered to your inbox every month