Host OS: Mac OS X 10.5 with VMware Fusion 2.0.6

I have successfully installed and running Ubuntu 9.10 server edition on a VMware guest. When I select my VM and click Install VMware Tools, nothing happens. Is there a way to install VMware tools through the CLI only?

2 Answers 2


Yes there is.

The VMware Tools are delivered on an ISO file you can hook up to your guest's CD-ROM.

  1. In Fusion, connect /Library/Application Support/VMware Fusion/isoimages/linux.iso to the CD-ROM for you Ubuntu guest.
  2. In the guest, open a terminal and log in as root (or do the rest with sudo)
  3. Mount the cdrom someplace like /mnt/cdrom/
  4. Copy the tools tar.gz file from /mnt/cdrom/ to someplace like /tmp, untar it and run /tmp/vmware-tools/vmware-install.pl

Kbyrd's answer is correct, but here are the actual commands:

After you click Install VMware Tools (note that the first step may be optional, depending on what you've got installed and the version of VMware that you are using):

 jed@host:~$ sudo apt-get install build-essential
 jed@host:~$ mount /cdrom
 jed@host:~$ cp /cdrom/VMware* /tmp
 jed@host:~$ umount /cdrom
 jed@host:~$ cd /tmp
 jed@host:~$ tar xvfz VMware*.gz
 jed@host:~$ cd vmware-tools-distrib/
 jed@host:~$ sudo ./vmware-install.pl

Answer yes to the questions and you should be all set.

Good luck,


  • @jed: Thanks, this really should be the accepted answer. I was simply answering off the top of my head without access to an actual Linux guest.
    – kbyrd
    Mar 29, 2010 at 16:40
  • @kbyrd, Nah, yours was a good answer, and you got there first. I just happened to have access to a system that I've done this on recently and figured I'd record the steps here for posterity. Thanks though. Mar 29, 2010 at 16:49

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