The Perfect Desktop - Slackware 12 - Page 9

18. Install VMware Server From a Perl script:

With VMware Server you can run other Operating Systems on your 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.

To download VMware Server, go to and click on Download Now:

Accept the license agreement by clicking Yes:

Then download the VMware Server for Linux .tar.gz file (not the rpm file!) to your desktop (e.g. to /home/brian/Desktop/downloads/vmware/):

To run VMware Server you need to get the serial number. 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:

Just for your information older versions of VMware Server required the vmware-any-any-update patch. When I installed VMware Server's latest version (1.0.4 | 9/18/07 | Build 56528) for this tutorial, I did not need the patch. Just in case you need the patch I wrote a brief HOWTO to install VMware using the any-any patch in Section 22.

To install VMware Server, open a terminal and type,


to become root.

Change your directory to the one containing VMware-server-1.0.4-56528.tar.gz, e.g. /home/brian/Desktop/downloads/vmware (replace brian with your own username!):

cd /home/brian/Desktop/downloads/vmware/

VMware will NOT install unless we first create a directory in /etc.

In the command line window type,

mkdir /etc/pam.d

Unpack the VMware-server-1.0.4-56528.tar.gz file and run the installer:

tar xzvf VMware-server-1.0.4-56528.tar.gz


cd vmware-server-distrib/

To install type,


The installer will ask you a lot of questions. You can always accept the default values simply by hitting Enter. When you see this question:

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.

Press Enter:

Press Enter:

Press Enter:

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.

To start VMware click K Menu->System->VMware Server Console:

Select Local host and click Connect:

I'm lucky enough to still have my copy of MS-DOS 6.22 on four floppy disks and my copy of One Must Fall: 2097

Enjoy VMware!


19 Inventory (VII)

Our inventory should now look like this:

[x] The GIMP
[x] Google Picasa

[x] Firefox
[x] Thunderbird
[x] Java Runtime Environment
[x] Flash
[x] RealPlayer
[x] aKregator
[x] Pidgin
[x] Xchat IRC
[x] gFTP
[x] BitTorrent
[x] Guarddog
[x] Google Earth
[x] Skype

[x] Adobe Acrobat reader
[x] Kontact
[x] Scribus
[x] kmymoney2

Sound & Video:
[x] Audacious
[x] K3B
[x] Noatun
[x] VLC Media Player

[x] Quanta Plus
[x] Kate
[x] The Java 2 SDK

System Utilities:
[x] htop
[x] iptraf
[x] netstat
[ ] Filelight
[x] KDE Info Center
[x] Konqueror

[x] VMware Server
[x] NTFS-3G driver
[x] FUSE

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11 Comment(s)

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From: at: 2007-10-12 17:59:29

Congratulations for your fantastic article! I just want to tell the Slackers about a new project I started a couple of months ago: QTGZManager. It is a front end to pkgtools written in C++/Qt4. Everyone who uses it seems satisfied. But you shouldn't take my word for it. Discover yourself at: 

Thank you. 

Alexandre Albuquerque Arnt.

From: at: 2007-12-11 04:13:24

Hi Alexandre,

Thank you for your nice comments.



From: at: 2008-06-06 10:29:48

A brilliant example of a how-to article, well done! Many thanks for your efforts, as they have saved me a lot work.


From: Anonymous at: 2009-02-20 12:26:54


slackpkg is now included in the standard distribution. Select a mirror in the file /etc/slackpkg/mirrors, read the man page and away you go. It makes security updates much simpler. BTW its run from the command line as root.



From: at: 2007-10-15 21:35:02


  • VMware needs the /etc/rc.d/rc0.d through /etc/rc.d/rc6.d and /etc/init.d, which by luck were created before.
  • /etc/init.d/vmware is not, at least for me, executed at startup, so I moved it to /etc/rc.d/rc.vmware and added this file to /etc/rc.d/rc.local.


From: at: 2007-10-28 03:07:22


Thanks for your comment.

You're correct that VMware needs those directories.   But they're created during the Slackware 12 installation routine.

The only directory you need to create prior to installing VMware-server-1.0.4 on Slackware 12 is /etc/pam.d.


From: at: 2007-10-12 11:56:00

I am very new to Slackware, I found this How To interesting, but I guess it will be even better if 2 issues are addressed.

First, Slackware is often installed by the installer with generic huge kernel and on startup udev issues error messages when it tries to load things that already are in the kernel. A desktop with error messages is imperfect, right?

Second, it is sometimes desireable to uninstall or reinstall software. Whenever the installation gets to a tgz package, it should be emphasized that it is a good idea to store the package. When there is no tgz, it is interesting if it is possible to create one.

I would also add something linked to the kernel, like nVidia driver, and something not trivial to ?onvert to tgz, like ruby (it compiles the --prefix into executales).

From: Anonymous at: 2008-11-19 03:15:31

Very good Bryan!! Thanks...

From: Anonymous at: 2009-01-21 19:21:58

Excellent m8, ty:)

From: Anonymous at: 2009-07-12 16:34:53

good job, useful stuff :)

From: Anonymous at: 2010-05-28 07:20:09

Slackware 13.1 is out with many improvements. If you could make a new guide that would be perfect and helpful for many people.