How-to Install Open VMware Tools (open-vm-tools) on *nix Guest Operating Systems

According to VMware KB Article 2073803, some of the benefits of bundling open-vm-tools are:

  • End users get the best out-of-box experience to efficiently deploy virtual machines on VMware virtual infrastructure.

  • Eliminates the need to separately install VMware Tools when open-vm-tools is bundled with the operating system because open-vm-tools is a fully-supported open source implementation of VMware Tools.

  • Reduces operational expenses and virtual machine downtime, because updates to open-vm-tools packages are provided with operating system maintenance updates and patches. This eliminates separate maintenance cycles for VMware Tools updates.

  • No compatibility matrix check is required for open-vm-tools.  

Also, open-vm-tools is available with these operating systems:

  • Fedora 19 and later releases

  • Debian 7.x and later releases

  • openSUSE 11.x and later releases

  • Recent Ubuntu releases (12.04 LTS, 13.10 and later)

  • Red Hat Enterprise Linux 7.0 and later releases

  • CentOS 7.0 and later releases

  • Oracle Linux 7.0 and later releases

  • SUSE Linux Enterprise 12 and later releases

  • FreeBSD 10.0 and later releases


Step-by-step guide

  1. Uninstall current version of VMware Tools. For instructions follow this VMware KB Article 

  2. Install Open VM Tools (open-vm-tools) via the OS package manager or by following Guest Operating System Installation Guide. Examples:

    1. Ubuntu/Debian

      apt install open-vm-tools
    2. FreeBSD

      pkg install open-vm-tools-nox11
    3. PhotonOS

      tdnf install -y open-vm-tools
    4. RedHat/CentOS/AlmaLinux/RockyLinux


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