How To Install VMware Server 1.0.x On An Ubuntu 9.10 Desktop

Version 1.0
Author: Falko Timme
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Last edited 12/14/2009

This tutorial provides step-by-step instructions on how to install VMware Server 1.0.x (1.0.10 at the time of this writing) on an Ubuntu 9.10 desktop system. This is for those who prefer VMware Server 1.0.x over VMware Server 2.

With VMware Server you can create and run guest operating systems ("virtual machines") such as Linux, Windows, FreeBSD, etc. under a host operating system. This has the benefit that you can run multiple operating systems on the same hardware which saves a lot of money, and you can move virtual machines from one VMware Server to the next one (or to a system that has the VMware Player which is also free).

Also, with VMware Server you can let your old Windows desktop (that you previously converted into a VMware virtual machine with VMware Converter, as described in this tutorial: run under your Ubuntu desktop. This can be useful if you depend on some applications that exist for Windows only, or if you want to switch to Linux slowly.

I do not issue any guarantee that this will work for you!


Installing VMware Server 1.0.x

To download VMware Server, go to and click on the VMware Server 1.0.10 link:

On the next page, click on the Download button next to VMware Server for Linux (file type: tar.gz, not rpm!):

Accept the license agreement by clicking on Yes:

Then download the VMware Server for Linux .tar.gz file (not the rpm file!) to your computer (e.g. to /home/falko/Downloads):

To get the serial number that you need to run VMware Server, go to Fill in your personal details. Afterwards you will get a page with a serial number for VMware Server. Write it down or print it out:

Then open a terminal (Applications > Accessories > Terminal):

Run the following command to install some necessary packages:

sudo aptitude install build-essential xinetd

If you are on an x86_64 system, you also need to install the package ia32-libs:

sudo aptitude install ia32-libs

Then go to the location where you saved the VMware Server .tar.gz file, e.g. /home/falko/Downloads (replace falko with your own username!):

cd /home/falko/Downloads

Unpack the VMware Server .tar.gz file and run the installer:

tar xvfz VMware-server-*.tar.gz
cd vmware-server-distrib
sudo ./

The installer will ask you a lot of questions. You can always accept the default values simply by hitting <ENTER>. Answer the following question with no...

Before running VMware Server for the first time, you need to configure it by
invoking the following command: "/usr/bin/". Do you want this
program to invoke the command for you now? [yes]
<-- no

.. because you'll get an error like this one otherwise when the installer tries to compile the kernel modules needed by VMware (if you answer with yes and get the errors, that's no problem either - just read on):

Building the vmmon module.

Using 2.6.x kernel build system.
make: Entering directory `/tmp/vmware-config0/vmmon-only'
make -C /lib/modules/2.6.31-14-generic/build/include/.. SUBDIRS=$PWD SRCROOT=$PWD/. modules
make[1]: Entering directory `/usr/src/linux-headers-2.6.31-14-generic'
  CC [M]  /tmp/vmware-config0/vmmon-only/linux/driver.o
In file included from /tmp/vmware-config0/vmmon-only/./include/vmware.h:25,
                 from /tmp/vmware-config0/vmmon-only/linux/driver.c:48:
/tmp/vmware-config0/vmmon-only/./include/vm_basic_types.h:104:7: warning: "__FreeBSD__" is not defined
In file included from /tmp/vmware-config0/vmmon-only/./include/x86.h:20,
                 from /tmp/vmware-config0/vmmon-only/./include/machine.h:24,
                 from /tmp/vmware-config0/vmmon-only/linux/driver.h:15,
                 from /tmp/vmware-config0/vmmon-only/linux/driver.c:49:
/tmp/vmware-config0/vmmon-only/./include/x86apic.h:79:1: warning: "APIC_BASE_MSR" redefined
In file included from /usr/src/linux-headers-2.6.31-14-generic/arch/x86/include/asm/apic.h:11,
                 from /usr/src/linux-headers-2.6.31-14-generic/arch/x86/include/asm/smp.h:13,
                 from /usr/src/linux-headers-2.6.31-14-generic/arch/x86/include/asm/mmzone_64.h:12,
                 from /usr/src/linux-headers-2.6.31-14-generic/arch/x86/include/asm/mmzone.h:4,
                 from include/linux/mmzone.h:773,
                 from include/linux/gfp.h:4,
                 from include/linux/kmod.h:22,
                 from include/linux/module.h:13,
                 from /tmp/vmware-config0/vmmon-only/linux/driver.c:12:
/usr/src/linux-headers-2.6.31-14-generic/arch/x86/include/asm/apicdef.h:133:1: warning: this is the location of the previous definition
In file included from /tmp/vmware-config0/vmmon-only/./include/x86.h:21,
                 from /tmp/vmware-config0/vmmon-only/./include/machine.h:24,
                 from /tmp/vmware-config0/vmmon-only/linux/driver.h:15,
                 from /tmp/vmware-config0/vmmon-only/linux/driver.c:49:
/tmp/vmware-config0/vmmon-only/./include/x86desc.h:593:7: warning: "_MSC_VER" is not defined
In file included from /tmp/vmware-config0/vmmon-only/./include/machine.h:24,
                 from /tmp/vmware-config0/vmmon-only/linux/driver.h:15,
                 from /tmp/vmware-config0/vmmon-only/linux/driver.c:49:
/tmp/vmware-config0/vmmon-only/./include/x86.h:830:1: warning: "PTE_PFN_MASK" redefined
In file included from /usr/src/linux-headers-2.6.31-14-generic/arch/x86/include/asm/paravirt.h:7,
                 from /usr/src/linux-headers-2.6.31-14-generic/arch/x86/include/asm/irqflags.h:61,
                 from include/linux/irqflags.h:57,
                 from /usr/src/linux-headers-2.6.31-14-generic/arch/x86/include/asm/system.h:11,
                 from /usr/src/linux-headers-2.6.31-14-generic/arch/x86/include/asm/processor.h:17,
                 from include/linux/prefetch.h:14,
                 from include/linux/list.h:6,
                 from include/linux/module.h:9,
                 from /tmp/vmware-config0/vmmon-only/linux/driver.c:12:
/usr/src/linux-headers-2.6.31-14-generic/arch/x86/include/asm/pgtable_types.h:182:1: warning: this is the location of the previous definition
In file included from /tmp/vmware-config0/vmmon-only/./include/vcpuset.h:78,
                 from /tmp/vmware-config0/vmmon-only/./include/modulecall.h:22,
                 from /tmp/vmware-config0/vmmon-only/./common/vmx86.h:18,
                 from /tmp/vmware-config0/vmmon-only/linux/driver.h:16,
                 from /tmp/vmware-config0/vmmon-only/linux/driver.c:49:
/tmp/vmware-config0/vmmon-only/./include/vm_atomic.h:226:7: warning: "_MSC_VER" is not defined
/tmp/vmware-config0/vmmon-only/./include/vm_atomic.h:230:7: warning: "_MSC_VER" is not defined
/tmp/vmware-config0/vmmon-only/./include/vm_atomic.h:298:7: warning: "_MSC_VER" is not defined
/tmp/vmware-config0/vmmon-only/./include/vm_atomic.h:304:7: warning: "_MSC_VER" is not defined
/tmp/vmware-config0/vmmon-only/./include/vm_atomic.h:357:7: warning: "_MSC_VER" is not defined
/tmp/vmware-config0/vmmon-only/./include/vm_atomic.h:402:7: warning: "_MSC_VER" is not defined
/tmp/vmware-config0/vmmon-only/./include/vm_atomic.h:446:7: warning: "_MSC_VER" is not defined
/tmp/vmware-config0/vmmon-only/./include/vm_atomic.h:489:7: warning: "_MSC_VER" is not defined
/tmp/vmware-config0/vmmon-only/./include/vm_atomic.h:533:7: warning: "_MSC_VER" is not defined
/tmp/vmware-config0/vmmon-only/./include/vm_atomic.h:576:7: warning: "_MSC_VER" is not defined
/tmp/vmware-config0/vmmon-only/./include/vm_atomic.h:620:7: warning: "_MSC_VER" is not defined
/tmp/vmware-config0/vmmon-only/./include/vm_atomic.h:663:7: warning: "_MSC_VER" is not defined
/tmp/vmware-config0/vmmon-only/./include/vm_atomic.h:665:7: warning: "_MSC_VER" is not defined
/tmp/vmware-config0/vmmon-only/./include/vm_atomic.h:705:7: warning: "_MSC_VER" is not defined
/tmp/vmware-config0/vmmon-only/./include/vm_atomic.h:748:7: warning: "_MSC_VER" is not defined
/tmp/vmware-config0/vmmon-only/./include/vm_atomic.h:750:7: warning: "_MSC_VER" is not defined
/tmp/vmware-config0/vmmon-only/./include/vm_atomic.h:790:7: warning: "_MSC_VER" is not defined
/tmp/vmware-config0/vmmon-only/./include/vm_atomic.h:831:7: warning: "_MSC_VER" is not defined
/tmp/vmware-config0/vmmon-only/./include/vm_atomic.h:833:7: warning: "_MSC_VER" is not defined
/tmp/vmware-config0/vmmon-only/./include/vm_atomic.h:871:7: warning: "_MSC_VER" is not defined
/tmp/vmware-config0/vmmon-only/./include/vm_atomic.h:912:7: warning: "_MSC_VER" is not defined
/tmp/vmware-config0/vmmon-only/./include/vm_atomic.h:914:7: warning: "_MSC_VER" is not defined
/tmp/vmware-config0/vmmon-only/./include/vm_atomic.h:952:7: warning: "_MSC_VER" is not defined
/tmp/vmware-config0/vmmon-only/./include/vm_atomic.h:1073:7: warning: "_MSC_VER" is not defined
/tmp/vmware-config0/vmmon-only/./include/vm_atomic.h:1077:7: warning: "_MSC_VER" is not defined
/tmp/vmware-config0/vmmon-only/./include/vm_atomic.h:1124:7: warning: "_MSC_VER" is not defined
/tmp/vmware-config0/vmmon-only/./include/vm_atomic.h:1329:7: warning: "_MSC_VER" is not defined
/tmp/vmware-config0/vmmon-only/./include/vm_atomic.h:1454:7: warning: "_MSC_VER" is not defined
/tmp/vmware-config0/vmmon-only/./include/vm_atomic.h:1587:7: warning: "_MSC_VER" is not defined
In file included from /tmp/vmware-config0/vmmon-only/linux/driver.h:20,
                 from /tmp/vmware-config0/vmmon-only/linux/driver.c:49:
/tmp/vmware-config0/vmmon-only/./include/compat_wait.h:37:5: warning: "VMW_HAVE_EPOLL" is not defined
/tmp/vmware-config0/vmmon-only/./include/compat_wait.h:43:5: warning: "VMW_HAVE_EPOLL" is not defined
In file included from /tmp/vmware-config0/vmmon-only/linux/driver.h:20,
                 from /tmp/vmware-config0/vmmon-only/linux/driver.c:49:
/tmp/vmware-config0/vmmon-only/./include/compat_wait.h:60: error: conflicting types for â€˜poll_initwait’
include/linux/poll.h:70: note: previous declaration of â€˜poll_initwait’ was here
In file included from /tmp/vmware-config0/vmmon-only/./include/vm_asm_x86_64.h:23,
                 from /tmp/vmware-config0/vmmon-only/./include/vm_asm.h:28,
                 from /tmp/vmware-config0/vmmon-only/linux/driver.c:52:
/tmp/vmware-config0/vmmon-only/./include/vm_asm_x86.h:430:7: warning: "_MSC_VER" is not defined
/tmp/vmware-config0/vmmon-only/./include/vm_asm_x86.h:676:7: warning: "_MSC_VER" is not defined
/tmp/vmware-config0/vmmon-only/./include/vm_asm_x86.h:716:7: warning: "_MSC_VER" is not defined
In file included from /tmp/vmware-config0/vmmon-only/./include/vm_asm.h:28,
                 from /tmp/vmware-config0/vmmon-only/linux/driver.c:52:
/tmp/vmware-config0/vmmon-only/./include/vm_asm_x86_64.h:40:7: warning: "_MSC_VER" is not defined
In file included from /tmp/vmware-config0/vmmon-only/linux/vmhost.h:13,
                 from /tmp/vmware-config0/vmmon-only/linux/driver.c:71:
/tmp/vmware-config0/vmmon-only/./include/compat_semaphore.h:5:27: error: asm/semaphore.h: No such file or directory
/tmp/vmware-config0/vmmon-only/linux/driver.c:146: error: unknown field â€˜nopage’ specified in initializer
/tmp/vmware-config0/vmmon-only/linux/driver.c:147: warning: initialization from incompatible pointer type
/tmp/vmware-config0/vmmon-only/linux/driver.c:150: error: unknown field â€˜nopage’ specified in initializer
/tmp/vmware-config0/vmmon-only/linux/driver.c:151: warning: initialization from incompatible pointer type
/tmp/vmware-config0/vmmon-only/linux/driver.c: In function â€˜LinuxDriver_Ioctl’:
/tmp/vmware-config0/vmmon-only/linux/driver.c:1650: error: â€˜struct task_struct’ has no member named â€˜euid’
/tmp/vmware-config0/vmmon-only/linux/driver.c:1650: error: â€˜struct task_struct’ has no member named â€˜uid’
/tmp/vmware-config0/vmmon-only/linux/driver.c:1651: error: â€˜struct task_struct’ has no member named â€˜fsuid’
/tmp/vmware-config0/vmmon-only/linux/driver.c:1651: error: â€˜struct task_struct’ has no member named â€˜uid’
/tmp/vmware-config0/vmmon-only/linux/driver.c:1652: error: â€˜struct task_struct’ has no member named â€˜egid’
/tmp/vmware-config0/vmmon-only/linux/driver.c:1652: error: â€˜struct task_struct’ has no member named â€˜gid’
/tmp/vmware-config0/vmmon-only/linux/driver.c:1653: error: â€˜struct task_struct’ has no member named â€˜fsgid’
/tmp/vmware-config0/vmmon-only/linux/driver.c:1653: error: â€˜struct task_struct’ has no member named â€˜gid’
/tmp/vmware-config0/vmmon-only/linux/driver.c:1670: error: too many arguments to function â€˜smp_call_function’
make[2]: *** [/tmp/vmware-config0/vmmon-only/linux/driver.o] Error 1
make[1]: *** [_module_/tmp/vmware-config0/vmmon-only] Error 2
make[1]: Leaving directory `/usr/src/linux-headers-2.6.31-14-generic'
make: *** [vmmon.ko] Error 2
make: Leaving directory `/tmp/vmware-config0/vmmon-only'
Unable to build the vmmon module.

For more information on how to troubleshoot module-related problems, please
visit our Web site at "" and

Execution aborted.


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From: RichardC at: 2010-01-13 22:45:37


 Thanks for taking the time to document this, it has worked a treat.

Richard C.

From: Dan Blanchette at: 2010-04-23 20:28:11

Thanks for taking the time to document this so well.  It worked on my 64-bit AMD processor computer using Ubuntu 9.10 after I tried doing a normal install of VMware Server 1.0.10. 



From: Tzvetan Mikov at: 2010-08-20 07:37:05

Worked like a charm! Thanks a lot.

From: droszi at: 2009-12-16 14:45:47

Very good step-by-step howto. Worked for the first try. Thanks!

From: Anonymous at: 2010-03-02 19:51:31

gracias, me ha sido de gran ayuda

From: none at: 2009-12-17 20:10:29

Very good !!

What about If I use ubuntu 9.10 server ?


From: Matthew Firth at: 2010-01-02 12:47:21


Thanks for this - it's a great guide.

 Two notes:

 1/  Your new kernel package that is built & installed will be huge - the initrd may blow out ten-fold (from 8MB to 80MB).  This is because the kernel config in /boot has debug enabled.  You'll probably want to turn this off and there is info elsewhere on the web on how to do it.

 2/  I couldn't start any VMs after following your howto.  /var/log/vmware/vmware-serverd.log has a message:  

 [localized] Version mismatch with vmmon module: expecting 138.0, got 137.0.

 To fix, I unpacked vmmon.tar from vmware-server-1.0.10/lib/vmware/modules/source. 

 Edited include/iocontrols_compat.h:396, changed

"return VMMON_VERSION_V55" to "return VMMON_VERSION_S1B1"

 ...retar into vmmon.tar, re-run, and it seems to work ok.

From: Dax at: 2010-01-11 15:11:27

Thanks for the tutorial - Worked Great!

 It's a shame that VMWare can't bother to support ubuntu.

From: David at: 2010-01-30 11:58:40

Before the step that says:

 cp /boot/config-`uname -r` .config

 I believe you need to have:

 cd /usr/src/linux-source-2.6.31 (or whatever kernel number)

 I know that it says "copy into kernel source directory" but everything else is spelled out so precisely that I managed to miss this important step.

Otherwise this is an excellent "howto".  Congratulations. Even *I* got it to work!