Adding vmware-tools to Centos5 or RHEL

Adding vmware-tools to RHEL6 or greater is easy, assuming you have the EPEL repo enabled all you do is:

yum install open-vm-tools.x86_64

That’s it your done.

Things are a tad more complicated for lower version of RHEL, for example RHEL5, some of this is down to the way VMWare have changed the way they support vmware-tools on Linux, they scrapped having the vm-tools.rpm the linux.iso which you use to push out from the vSpehre client,  they now advise you to use your disto’s repos.

Here’s how you do for RHEL5.

Check your version/architecture etc

[root@foo ~]# cat /etc/redhat-release 
 CentOS release 5.6 (Final)
 [root@foo ~]# uname -a
 Linux foo.local 2.6.18-308.20.1.el5 #1 SMP Tue Nov 13 10:15:12 EST 2012 x86_64 x86_64 x86_64 GNU/Linux

Create repo file

touch /etc/yum.repos.d/vmware-tools.repo
Add this and adjust for your release/architecture, tip, DO NOT USE the ''latest'' repo, it has caused issues, always go for a point/named release

 [vmware-tools]
 name=VMware Tools
 #baseurl=http://packages.vmware.com/tools/esx/5.1latest/rhel6/x86_64 # DO NOT USE
 #baseurl=http://packages.vmware.com/tools/esx/5.1latest/rhel6/i386
 #baseurl=http://packages.vmware.com/tools/esx/5.1latest/rhel5/i386
 #baseurl=http://packages.vmware.com/tools/esx/5.1latest/rhel5/x86_64
 baseurl=http://packages.vmware.com/tools/esx/5.5u2/rhel5/x86_64   <====== THIS WORKS, NOTE THE PATH
 #baseurl=http://packages.vmware.com/tools/esx/4.0latest/rhel6/x86_64
 #baseurl=http://packages.vmware.com/tools/esx/4.0latest/rhel5/i686
 #baseurl=http://packages.vmware.com/tools/esx/4.0latest/rhel6/i686
 enabled=1
 gpgcheck=1

Download the keys, you may have to export proxy settings

 wget http://packages.vmware.com/tools/keys/VMWARE-PACKAGING-GPG-DSA-KEY.pub
 wget http://packages.vmware.com/tools/keys/VMWARE-PACKAGING-GPG-RSA-KEY.pub

Import the keys

 rpm --import ./VMWARE-PACKAGING-GPG-RSA-KEY.pub
 rpm --import ./VMWARE-PACKAGING-GPG-DSA-KEY.pub

Now you are ready to install – IMPORTANT, install ”vmware-tools-esx-kmods.x86_64” first
yum install vmware-tools-esx-kmods.x86_64 – and it can take some time.

 yum install yum install vmware-tools-esx-nox.x86_64

”vmware-tools-esx-nox.x86_64” is for the non GUI version or headless, which is what we want for us as we do not run GNOME etc on our servers.

Amongst other things, having vmware-tools installed allows the full potential of the vmxnet3 NIC to be exploited, and allows you to shutdown the guest from with the vSphere client.

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About hedscratchers

A UK ex-pat now living in the USA.
This entry was posted in Linux & Solaris and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

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