How To Install VMware Server 1.0.x On An Ubuntu 9.10 Desktop - Page 2

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Next do this:

cd /home/falko/Downloads
wget -c
tar xvfj vmware-update*.tar.bz2

Before we finish the VMware Server installation, we must build a new kernel with the init_mm feature enabled. Become root...

sudo su

... and install the kernel source:

aptitude install linux-source-2.6.31

Next we install a few packages that we need to build the kernel:

aptitude install fakeroot build-essential crash kexec-tools makedumpfile kernel-wedge linux libncurses5-dev kernel-package

If you notice that a new kernel gets installed during this command, please reboot the system:


Now become root again:

sudo su

Next do this:

cd /usr/src
tar xvfj linux-source-2.6.31.tar.bz2
cd linux-source-2.6.31

Open arch/x86/kernel/init_task.c...

gedit arch/x86/kernel/init_task.c

... and add the line EXPORT_UNUSED_SYMBOL(init_mm); right at the end of the file, behind DEFINE_PER_CPU_SHARED_ALIGNED(struct tss_struct, init_tss) = INIT_TSS;:

DEFINE_PER_CPU_SHARED_ALIGNED(struct tss_struct, init_tss) = INIT_TSS;

Then copy the kernel configuration of the current kernel into the kernel source directory...

cp /boot/config-`uname -r` .config

... and run:

make menuconfig

In the kernel configuration menu, go to Load an Alternate Configuration File...

... fill in .config and select Ok:

Next select Exit in the main kernel configuration menu...

... and then Yes when you're asked: Do you wish to save your new kernel configuration?

Then run

make-kpkg clean
fakeroot make-kpkg --initrd --append-to-version=-custom kernel_image kernel_headers

to build the new kernel. This can take a lot of time so be patient.

Afterwards you can find a linux-image and a linux-headers .deb package in the /usr/src/ directory:

cd /usr/src/
ls -l

[email protected]:/usr/src# ls -l
total 461180
drwxr-xr-x 23 root root      4096 2009-10-27 19:16 linux-headers-2.6.31-14
drwxr-xr-x  7 root root      4096 2009-10-27 19:16 linux-headers-2.6.31-14-generic
drwxr-xr-x 23 root root      4096 2009-12-11 16:57 linux-headers-2.6.31-16
drwxr-xr-x  7 root root      4096 2009-12-11 16:57 linux-headers-2.6.31-16-generic
-rw-r--r--  1 root src    6319116 2009-12-11 19:51 linux-headers-
-rw-r--r--  1 root src  403726102 2009-12-11 19:48 linux-image-
drwxr-xr-x 26 root root      4096 2009-12-11 19:48 linux-source-2.6.31
-rw-r--r--  1 root root  62176632 2009-12-08 09:02 linux-source-2.6.31.tar.bz2
[email protected]:/usr/src#

Install both packages as follows...

dpkg -i linux-image- linux-headers-

... and then reboot the system:


Afterwards, run

uname -a

... as a normal user, and you should see your new kernel:

[email protected]:~$ uname -a
Linux falko-desktop #1 SMP Fri Dec 11 17:36:56 CET 2009 x86_64 GNU/Linux
[email protected]:~$

Now we can continue with the VMware Server installation:

cd /home/falko/Downloads/vmware-update*/
sudo ./

Answer the following question with yes:

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

Afterwards you can accept the default values simply by hitting <ENTER>.

When the installer asks you

In which directory do you want to keep your virtual machine files?
[/var/lib/vmware/Virtual Machines]

you can either accept the default value or specify a location that has enough free space to store your virtual machines.

At the end of the installation, you will be asked to enter a serial number:

Please enter your 20-character serial number.

Type XXXXX-XXXXX-XXXXX-XXXXX or 'Enter' to cancel:

Fill in your serial number for VMware Server.

After the successful installation, you can delete the VMware Server download file and the installation directory:

cd /home/falko/Downloads
rm -f VMware-server*
rm -fr vmware-server-distrib/
rm -fr vmware-update*

You will now find VMware Server under Applications > Other > VMware Server Console:

When you start it, select Local host:

Afterwards, you can create virtual machines (or import your virtual Windows machine that you created with VMware Converter):


Falko Timme

About Falko Timme

Falko Timme is an experienced Linux administrator and founder of Timme Hosting, a leading nginx business hosting company in Germany. He is one of the most active authors on HowtoForge since 2005 and one of the core developers of ISPConfig since 2000. He has also contributed to the O'Reilly book "Linux System Administration".

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By: droszi

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

By: Anonymous

gracias, me ha sido de gran ayuda

By: none

Very good !!

What about If I use ubuntu 9.10 server ?


By: Matthew Firth


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.

By: Dax

Thanks for the tutorial - Worked Great!

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

By: David

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!