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This article is about installing VMware in Arch, you may also be interested in Installing Arch Linux in VMware.

VMware Server Installation

Install vmware-server from the AUR.

VMware Server Console

Install vmware-server-console from the AUR. Alternatively, on Arch64, the bin32 version can also be installed.


On both cases, the vmware image is not included in the AUR anymore. So you should:

  • download and extract the tarball from the AUR
  • download the image from VMWare website.
  • copy VMware-server-2.0.2-203138.i386.tar.gz to the build directory
  • finish building

VMware Workstation or VMware Player


Note: This will not install with pacman, so the files installed will not be traceable/removable with pacman.

To install Workstation or Player on a Linux host using a bundle:

1. Download Template:Filename or Template:Filename from the VMware site. (Template:Codeline you can also try the testing (Beta/RC) versions found in here: http://communities.vmware.com/community/beta/ws but please note that they indeed are beta and so there's no guarantee you will not run into issues).

2. In a terminal cd to the directory where you downloaded the file. At this point, you have the option to continue with the instructions below, you or can use an automated shell script (cd to the same directory your VMware installer is located before downloading): wget http://kaslit.com/downloads/vmwareinstallshell.sh - Once you run the shell script like so (as root): sh vmwareinstallshell.sh , you will need to go to follow steps 5 and 6 below. After that, the shell script will take care of the rest.

3. Become root and create a fake System V init style directory for VMware and start the installation (the --console flag uses terminal instead of the GUI and the --custom asks all the unnecessary questions that nobody cares about - but we need it to select the Template:Codeline runlevels directory):

# mkdir -p /etc/rc.d/vmware.d/{rc{0..6},init}.d
# chmod +x VMware-<edition>-<version>.<release>.<architecture>.bundle
# ./VMware-<edition>-<version>.<release>.<architecture>.bundle --console --custom

4. (Read &) accept the EULA to continue.

5. Accept the default settings until it prompts for Template:Codeline runlevels then set to:


6. For Template:Codeline set to:


It might happen that you need to set the directory for Template:Codeline as Template:Codeline (the default) or else the installation would fail. If you do, you can create a symlink from Template:Codeline to Template:Codeline afterwards or the other way around (note that you can't remove the Template:Codeline after you've placed it somewhere because that's where VMware will be looking for it).

7. (Optional) Enter the directory path to the Integrated Virtual Debugger for Eclipse if Eclipse is installed.

8. Mash enter to install. Note that if nothing happens at this point and you are returned to the prompt, try re-running the installation without the --console option.

9. At this point you would want to install the modules. First you need to either change the Template:Codeline in Template:Codeline at the lines 88 and 108 from:




or create a symlink from Template:Codeline to Template:Codeline with:

# ln -s /bin/lsmod /sbin/lsmod

VMware modules and patches

Tango-view-fullscreen.pngThis article or section needs expansion.Tango-view-fullscreen.png

Reason: please use the first argument of the template to provide a brief explanation. (Discuss in Talk:VMware#)
  • For 2.6.39 kernel and VMware player 3.1.4, there is a required patch
Note: like the scripts below, you must extract all of the VMware sources out first and then run this patch. The patch is setup for the source to be in the same local directory of the patch. If you want to run the patch directly against the source in the directory where it already resides, change every instance of "source-original" in the patch file to "/usr/lib/vmware/modules/source" after extracting all five of the tar files in that directory. Patch and then tar them again.
$ mkdir /tmp/vmware && cd /tmp/vmware
$ cp -R /usr/lib/vmware/modules/source/ .
$ cd /tmp/vmware/source
$ wget http://weltall.heliohost.org/wordpress/wp-content/uploads/2011/05/vmware2.6.39fixed.patch
# if the link above does not work, an alternative is to wget http://kaslit.com/downloads/vmware2.6.39fixed.patch
$ for i in ./*.tar; do tar -xf $i; done
$ for i in ./*.tar; do mv $i $i.orginal; done
$ patch --batch --force -p1 < vmware2.6.39fixed.patch
$ tar cf vmblock.tar vmblock-only
$ tar cf vmci.tar vmci-only
$ tar cf vmmon.tar vmmon-only
$ tar cf vmnet.tar vmnet-only
$ tar cf vsock.tar vsock-only
$ cp -vf *.tar /usr/lib/vmware/modules/source/
Note: In case the above did not work, a Fedora community member uploaded the sources/ folder in a compressed tarball.


In some cases, this is the only method to get VMware Workstation 7.1.4 (and possibly other VMware products) to compile against systems running 2.6.39, which has done away with smp_lock.

Cpm notes:

I applied the 2.6.39 patch listed at the top but several chunks failed, resulting in corrupted sources/ and VMware module compiling would crash on smp_lock. I replaced the entire contents of the sources folder with the contents of the compressed archive and only received a false error message at the end, once all modules finished compiling. Upon investigation of the log files, nothing went wrong. Subsequent start up of VMware Workstation proceeded flawlessly.
Note: from Oliv: I also try to maintain a package in the Aur called vmware-patch that can be used as a helper to patch vmware-player (not tested on workstation). You can check the very brief documentation on the AUR. As I use vmware-player, I try to maintain it up to date as soon as I install a new kernel.
  • For 2.6.38 kernel and VMware player 3.1.4, there is no patch required
  • For 2.6.37 kernel and VMware 7.x.x (tested with 7.1.3), there's a script to patch the VMware sources (run as root):
Note: This script also works for 2.6.38 kernels and VMware 7.1.4
$ cd /tmp
$ wget http://www.russo79.com/vmware7.1.3-patch-kernel-2.6.37.sh
# chmod +x vmware7.1.3-patch-kernel-2.6.37.sh
# ./vmware7.1.3-patch-kernel-2.6.37.sh

This script was based on the patch taken from http://communities.vmware.com/thread/293321

  • For 2.6.37 kernel and VMware player 3.1.4, there is no patch required
  • For 2.6.36 kernel and VMware 7.x.x, there's a script to patch the vmmon (run as root):
$ cd /tmp
$ wget http://files.archlinux.org.il/vmmon_fix_2.6.36.sh
# chmod +x vmmon_fix_2.6.36.sh
# ./vmmon_fix_2.6.36.sh
  • For 2.6.35 kernel and VMware 7.x.x, there's a script to patch the VMware sources :
$ cd /tmp
$ wget http://www.sputnick-area.net/scripts/vmware7.1.1-patch-kernel-2.6.35.bash
# chmod +x vmware7.1.1-patch-kernel-2.6.35.bash
# ./vmware7.1.1-patch-kernel-2.6.35.bash

Installation (concluded)

Now you can install the modules. You can do this with either by launching VMware and letting it install the modules from there with the GUI or alternatively you can execute the command:

# vmware-modconfig --console --install-all

10. (Optional) Add vmware to the DAEMONS array in /etc/rc.conf so that the service is started automatically on boot.

11. Install and run HAL

#/etc/rc.d/hal start

12. Now, open your VMware Workstation (Template:Codeline in the console) or VMware Player (Template:Codeline in the console) to configure & use!


Check the product name

# vmware-installer -l

uninstall product

# vmware-installer -u <vmware-product>

Manually included parts in /etc/rc.d have to be deleted manually. Don't forget to remove vmware from the /etc/rc.conf DAEMONS array.

Extracting the VMware BIOS

To extract the VMware BIOS, which can be manipulated and later used with your virtual machines:

$ objcopy /usr/lib/vmware/bin/vmware-vmx -O binary -j bios440 --set-section-flags bios440=a bios440.rom.Z
$ perl -e 'use Compress::Zlib; my $v; read STDIN, $v, '$(stat -c%s "./bios440.rom.Z")'; $v = uncompress($v); print $v;' < bios440.rom.Z > bios440.rom

Once you've modified the BIOS in whatever way required, move it to the directory where your VM is stored, and add it to the Template:Codeline file:

bios440.filename = "bios440.rom"


Kernel upgrades and VMware modules

If when you ran


you get back to the prompt and VMware don't ask you to makes choices, then you probably have an old install, so you should rename /etc/vmware-installer/ :

# mv /etc/vmware-installer /etc/vmware-installer.old

If you get an error like this when launching up a Virtual Machine:

Could not open /dev/vmmon: No such file or directory.
Please make sure that the kernel module `vmmon' is loaded.

It means that at least the one VMware service isn't started up. You can start them all up by running (as root):

# /etc/rc.d/vmware start

If, on the other hand VMware complains about kernel headers like this:

Kernel headers for version 2.6.xx-xxxx were not found. If you installed them.......

Install them with the following:

# pacman -S kernel26-headers

error: implicit declaration of function ‘iommu_unmap_range’

If the following error happens while compiling modules

/tmp/vmware-root/modules/vmmon-only/linux/iommu.c:403:7: erreur: implicit declaration of function ‘iommu_unmap_range’
make[2]: *** [/tmp/vmware-root/modules/vmmon-only/linux/iommu.o] Erreur 1
make[1]: *** [_module_/tmp/vmware-root/modules/vmmon-only] Erreur 2
make[1]: quittant le répertoire « /usr/src/linux-2.6.35-ARCH »
make: *** [vmmon.ko] Erreur 2

This error is due to a change in the kernel API, the change is merely just a change of name which removes the suffixed '_range' from the iommu functions. You can manually patch the sources by removing the _range suffix with a quick sed expression:

cd /tmp
tar xvf /usr/lib/vmware/modules/source/vmmon.tar
sed 's/_range//' -i vmmon-only/linux/iommu.c
tar cvf /usr/lib/vmware/modules/source/vmmon.tar vmmon-only

Please note that when upgrading the kernel you will have to rebuild the vmware modules with:

$ vmware-modconfig --console --install-all

Otherwise your whole system might crash when trying to power up VMs so keep that in mind.

error: implicit declaration of function ‘kernel_locked’

If you're getting this error it means you're most likely on a 2.6.36 > kernel and require some additional attention. Attention that VMware rarely pays.

There's a patch available for this and several more compile errors over at [1]

error: ‘struct sock’ has no member named ‘sk_sleep’

This error often occures when compiling the vsock module, the error looks something like:

make[1]: Entering directory `/usr/src/linux-headers-2.6.35-7-generic-pae'
  CC [M]  /tmp/vmware-root/modules/vsock-only/linux/af_vsock.o
/tmp/vmware-root/modules/vsock-only/linux/af_vsock.c:312: warning: initialization from incompatible pointer type
/tmp/vmware-root/modules/vsock-only/linux/af_vsock.c:359: warning: initialization from incompatible pointer type
/tmp/vmware-root/modules/vsock-only/linux/af_vsock.c: In function ‘VSockVmciStreamConnect’:
/tmp/vmware-root/modules/vsock-only/linux/af_vsock.c:3224: error: ‘struct sock’ has no member named ‘sk_sleep’
/tmp/vmware-root/modules/vsock-only/linux/af_vsock.c:3247: error: ‘struct sock’ has no member named ‘sk_sleep’


To fix this we do a similar approach as the one mentioned above:

cd /tmp
tar xvf /usr/lib/vmware/modules/source/vsock.tar
sed 's/\([a-z_]*\)->compat_sk_sleep/compat_sk_sleep(\1)/g' -i vsock-only/linux/af_vsock.c
tar cvf /usr/lib/vmware/modules/source/vsock.tar vsock-only

Then rerun:

$ vmware-modconfig --console --install-all

And you should be fine.

Printing from the guest OS

If you've configured your guest OS to use the printers on your host, and the print jobs aren't going through, there may be a permissions problem with the ThinPrint CUPS filter (thnucups), which is used by VMware.

From Template:Codeline:

E [22/Nov/2010:14:10:11 -0800] Unable to execute /usr/lib/cups/filter/thnucups: insecure file permissions (0104755)

This should fix that:

$ sudo chmod u-sw /usr/lib/cups/filter/thnucups
$ sudo /etc/rc.d/cups restart

VMware 7.xx gui won't start

When executing vmware from a terminal, you see the following output but the GUI won't start,

$ vmware
Logging to /tmp/vmware-jcosta/setup-5527.log
filename:       /lib/modules/2.6.38-ck/misc/vmmon.ko
supported:      external
license:        GPL v2
description:    VMware Virtual Machine Monitor.
author:         VMware, Inc.
vermagic:       2.6.38-ck SMP preempt mod_unload
filename:       /lib/modules/2.6.38-ck/misc/vmnet.ko
supported:      external
license:        GPL v2
description:    VMware Virtual Networking Driver.
author:         VMware, Inc.
vermagic:       2.6.38-ck SMP preempt mod_unload
filename:       /lib/modules/2.6.38-ck/misc/vmblock.ko
supported:      external
license:        GPL v2
description:    VMware Blocking File System
author:         VMware, Inc.
srcversion:     400149ED038D22A87322D56
vermagic:       2.6.38-ck SMP preempt mod_unload
parm:           root:The directory the file system redirects to. (charp)
filename:       /lib/modules/2.6.38-ck/misc/vmci.ko
supported:      external
license:        GPL v2
description:    VMware Virtual Machine Communication Interface (VMCI).
author:         VMware, Inc.
vermagic:       2.6.38-ck SMP preempt mod_unload
filename:       /lib/modules/2.6.38-ck/misc/vsock.ko
supported:      external
license:        GPL v2
description:    VMware Virtual Socket Family
author:         VMware, Inc.
srcversion:     CF8ABF14AFA7E44C2CC4C9C
depends:        vmci
vermagic:       2.6.38-ck SMP preempt mod_unload
filename:       /lib/modules/2.6.38-ck/misc/vmmon.ko
supported:      external
license:        GPL v2
description:    VMware Virtual Machine Monitor.
author:         VMware, Inc.
vermagic:       2.6.38-ck SMP preempt mod_unload

This seems to be a problem with glibmm-2.28, downgrade glibmm to, and it should work.