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Aug 21

Fixing problems with Ubuntu 13.04 and VmWare Tools

Installing Ubuntu on my VmWare fusion box has never been so difficult as it was last weeks, when I needed to have it ready as soon as possible.

Though 12.04 LTS has been proved to be a great choice when you need a solid rock linux box, latest Ubuntu boxes are preferable, on my opinion, for development purpose.

This way, switching to the latest, bleeding edge kernel hasn’t gone well for the people at VmWare.

There are two very big problems with the default installation. I usually choose the default installation because you only need the ubuntu ISO image and few minutes, and a new, shining linux box is ready to serve.

Not this time.

First, you’ll have problem with the resolution change. The very first thing you’ll be doing after the installation completes is logging-in, change the resolution to higher one (1440×900 on my mac) and… crash.

Your box will be stuck in the login screen, and you’ll not be able to login anymore.

Editing the .config/xfce/xfconf/xfce-perchannel-xml/displays.xml will make you able to be back to 800×600, but nothing else.

The solution is really simple, just increase the box memory size. By default the installer will install 1024M of RAM and 1 core, even if you have more memory available and a multicore cpu.

Anyway, increasing the ram (I set it to 4096Mb) will allow you to change to any resolution.

Second, some feature of the vmware tools will be disable, in particular the “shared folder” tool. This is because the vmware tools installer is not compatible with the kernel 3.8, so you’ll need a fix. Installing the vmware will not work, due to this incompatibility, the compilation will not even start because the installer will expect a version.h header that was removed on 3.8.

The solution: nacholito on the ubuntuforums.org community has posted this article where a script and relevant patches can be downloaded. You’ll need to download the 3 files (I packaged them in a single zip archive for your convenience), unzip it on the same directory of your vmware tools targz, and execute the vmwaretools-fix.sh.

Then use the installation script as usual.

Thanks again to nacholito for his post.

Permanent link to this article: http://www.studiofuga.com/2013/08/21/fixing-problems-with-ubuntu-13-04-and-vmware-tools/

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