Sunday, May 22, 2011

vSphere 4.1 Linux Tools on Ubuntu Server 10.4

I use the server version of Ubuntu for a lot of projects. I prefer to use the non-graphical version since the resources are low. This allows me to keep my environment secure and overhead low. Most people can easily install the Linux tools in the graphical version by using a mouse. When it comes to the terminal version (SSH) they will find that it is not that easy for a newbie. Here is a very quick set of directions for making this work. Please note that I am doing this on a fresh machine and one that if something goes wrong I can simply delete the machine and start over. Also to note that I typically use the VMNET3 drivers which install perfectly with this version out of the box. Even Windows can do that.

Let's get started. I am assuming that you have setup your Ubuntu 64 or 32 properly. When you created the machine you chose the correct version of the OS. Why is this important? Well the tools are mounted to the machine based on the choice at the beginning of creation. Let's say you said Solaris Unix and then install Ubuntu. When the tools mount they will provide your virtual machine with Solaris tools and not linux tools. Word to the wise is choose the closest description that matches your machine. Since you did this right I will continue.

Step 1. Once you have powered on the virtual machine and have the prompt. Right click on the machine on the inventory to the left. Then goto Guest > Install/Upgrade VMware Tools.

Step 2. Now log into the machine. Now I typically do these command as root but you can also do "sudo" as long as you have the rights to run sudo. Again it might be easier just to log in as root just for this exercise. Copy the below line into the terminal window and then press enter.
mkdir -p /mnt/cdrom && mount -t iso9660 -o ro /dev/cdrom /mnt/cdrom
Step 3. Nothing happens? Well it did, remember your in the terminal window but the system did/should have looked for the VMware Linux tools and mounted them in the proper directory. Now we have to go and copy the tools to a folder and begin the install.

Step 4. Navigate to the tools. Type the below command
cd /mnt/cdrom
Note: You should be able to now type "ls" to see what files are in this directory.

Step 5. Now copy the tools from the CD ROM to a folder so that we can begin to install.
cp VMwareTools-8.3.2-299420.tar.gz /home/USERNAME
Note: USERNAME is a folder that you probably created when you setup Ubuntu so replace this with your username

Step 6. UnTar the file to begin the install.
tar -xzf VMwareTools-8.3.2-299420.tar.gz
Step 7. Run the installer
cd /home/USERNAME/vmware-tools-distrib
Step 8. Check vCenter/ESXi. Once the tools have been installed your vCenter or VI Client should show information about the virtual machine like IP, hostname, etc. If not then try rebooting. If it still doesn't work then reply to this post.

Why should I have VMware tools? Your machine will run better, vMotion better and also backup better with the ability for vCenter to directly communicate with the virtual machine, good luck and hope this helps.

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