Tutorial: Setting up Windows in the Vmware Workstation Player

With the Vmware Workstation Player you open finished virtual machines and create your own virtual PCs. Almost all Windows versions are supported – including Linux.

Step 1: Install Vmware Workstation Player

Install the English speaking

Vmware Workstation Player
. The current edition of the player can be found on the website

from the manufacturer Vmware
. Follow the instructions and accept the suggested target directory or click on ”


“To select a different folder on the computer. Once the player has been set up, you can open it via the start menu or by double-clicking the desktop icon. Confirm the private use when starting the player for the first time with ”

Use VMware Workstation 15 Player for free for non-commercial use

“And enter your email address for free registration.

If the installation does not work:

If the setup routine of the player reports that installation is not possible, you have activated Microsoft Hyper-V on your PC. To use the Vmware virtualizer, you need to disable Hyper-V and run the Vmware Player installer again. The Vmware Player is also part of the paid Vmware Workstation software (see box below). If the workstation version is set up on your PC, you do not need to install the Vmware Player additionally. It can be called up in the start menu.

Vmware Workstation Pro: Professional virtualization on the desktop

Vmware Workstation Pro
is the big brother of the Vmware Workstation Player. The software, which costs around 250 euros, exceeds the player version in terms of features and setting options. Handy extras include caching snapshots and cloning virtual machines.

Like the Vmware Player, Vmware Workstation Pro also creates a virtual shell in which other operating systems can be run as guest systems. In the snapshot manager you can freeze any state of a virtual machine and return to the desired state at any time. Different application scenarios can be restored on the basis of a system at the push of a button. Virtual hard disks can be encrypted with the Vmware Workstation Pro using the AES algorithm with 256 bits, and virtual machines can also be encrypted. Changing settings can be protected by a password. The workstation version supports the exchange of image files between different PCs and in the network.

Remote access to a virtual system is possible within Vmware Workstation Pro. The software allows members of a team to share and use virtual machines. Access to the Vsphere management environment, in which virtual machines can be centrally stored and accessed in a network environment, is reserved for the Workstation Pro version only.

Step 2: Set up the virtual PC

Step 2: Set up the virtual PC

The Vmware Player uses a clever installation technique with which virtual machines of current Windows and Linux operating systems can be created with just a few clicks. In the start window of the player click on the command “Create a New Virtual Machine”. You now have various options to choose from: The first point ”

Installer disc

“Requires an installation DVD. Enter the DVD drive here to create the virtual machine directly from a setup DVD. The Vmware Player usually recognizes the operating system used automatically.

I will install the operating system later

“Skips the installation wizard and just sets up an empty virtual machine in which you then set up the guest system.

In our example we activate the second point ”

Installer disc image file (iso)

“And select with”


the Windows 10 ISO file on the local hard drive
out. The Vmware Player creates the virtual machine from the image file. Click on ”


“. Now the Vmware Player asks for all necessary data, which are necessary for an unattended installation. Click on ”


“Takes you to the next step. Here you assign a name for your virtual machine and determine the storage location for the image file. Finally, set the size of the hard disk space for the virtual PC. In most cases the suggested 60 GB will be sufficient. You can then simply accept the information below about the file division.

See also:

The home office in a virtual PC

Step 3: configure the system

Step 3: configure the system

For the last step with the hardware settings for the virtual machine, click again on ”


“. Then press ”

Customize hardware

“. Assign a maximum of half of the physically available main memory to the virtual machine. Windows 7, 8.1 and 10 run reasonably fast with 2 GB of RAM. Most Linux distributions are already satisfied with 512 MB RAM, but you can only achieve a reasonable working speed in the VM with 2 GB RAM or more. Click on the buttons ”


” and ”


“Start the unattended installation of the operating system. The VMware Player does the rest by itself.

The installation of the VMware Tools (see box below) is also part of the setup. You can set higher screen resolutions right from the start and exit the player window back to the Windows desktop without first pressing the host key Ctrl-Alt. When everything is ready and Windows has booted, you can make the necessary system settings and adapt the operating system to your needs.

VMware Tools: Retrofit extras for guest systems


Vmware Tools
are an integral part of the VMware Workstation Player and offer a number of useful extensions in the Windows or Linux guest system.

These include, for example, an adapted graphics card driver, bus support for some operating systems and a special network driver. The installation of the VMware Tools in the guest system is a prerequisite for the smooth change of the mouse pointer between the host operating system and the virtual machine. The VMware Tools must also be configured for access to the shared folder in the guest PC. When installing a new operating system in the virtual PC using the Vmware Player wizard, the Vmware Tools are set up automatically at the end. If you would like to install the extension library manually, start the virtual machine and select “Player”, then go to “Manager” and finally to “Install VMware Tools”. Then follow the instructions in the wizard.

Step 4: Boot and exit the virtual PC

Step 4: Boot and exit the virtual PC

The main window of Vmware Workstation Player shows the available virtual PCs. If you would like to integrate an image file that already exists on your computer in the VMware Workstation Player, go to the “Open a Virtual Machine” command on the right in the window and select the desired file by double-clicking it. Another double click on an entry starts the system, a right click and ”


“Takes you to the settings for the virtual PC. In the menu ”


“Switch to full-screen view with” Full Screen “- alternatively use the key combination Ctrl-Alt-Enter. You can return to the window view via the toolbar. To stop a machine and freeze its current state, select ”

Suspend guest

“. The next time you start the system, you will see the virtual computer as you left it before. With ”

Shut Down Guest

“Instruct the guest system to shutdown. ”

Restart guest

“Corresponds to a reset on a real PC.

Step 5: add hardware

Step 5: add hardware

As with a physical computer, the virtual system can also be upgraded with additional hardware. For example, if you need a second hard drive, right-click the name of the virtual machine in the player’s start window and then click ”

Edit virtual machine settings

” and ”


“. In the following window mark the entry ”

Hard disk

“. Click on ”


“And accept the suggested drive type with”


“. Choose ”

Create a new virtual disk

“And set the desired size. Assign a name for the hard disk and click on ”



The DVD drive used for the player can be found under the item ”


” on. In the player, you also have the option of setting up a virtual printer to output documents from the virtual machine on your real printer. To do this, select in the ”

Add hardware wizard

” the entry ”


“And follow the instructions on the screen.

Step 6: regulate network access

Step 6: regulate network access

In the settings for a virtual machine, you can choose from several network access variants. When selecting ”


“The virtual machine receives a unique identity in the network. The virtual machine receives an IP address from a DHCP server within the network, which is usually the WLAN router. This gives the virtual PC full access to the network and the Internet.

With the setting ”


“(Network Address Translation) set the virtual PC to share the host’s Internet connection with it. The default IP address used by the virtual machine is not visible from the outside. The mode ”


“Is intended for an isolated guest system. The virtual computer and the virtual host adapter are connected to a private network and the IP addresses are automatically assigned by the VMware DHCP server. Real and virtual computers can communicate with each other, but access to and from the Internet is not possible.


Unlimited use of trial versions in the VM

Step 7: Shut down the guest system

Step 7: Shut down the guest system

How the Vmware Player terminates active guest systems by default, set on the start page via the ”


“-Button and mouse clicks on”


” and ”


” under the point ”

Close behavior

” a. Recommended is ”

Suspend the virtual machine

“Because this is the only way to freeze the current system status for the next session. If the checkmark next to the selection option is set at the top, you have to confirm closing the virtual computer every time to be sure.

Step 8: Integrate the guest PC in Windows

Step 8: Integrate the guest PC in Windows

With the Unity function in the VMware Player you merge a virtual machine with the desktop of the host system. In Unity mode, for example, the Linux desktop of the guest PC disappears and its applications run as a window on the Windows desktop – the virtual computer is practically invisible. You start the close-up window mode via the menu bar and ”


” such as ”


“. You exit the display mode in the player window by clicking on ”

Exit Unity


Step 9: Set up a shared folder

Step 9: Set up a shared folder

Set up a folder on the host computer that the guest computer can also use. To do this, open the Vmware Workstation Player with a right click and ”


“The settings of a closed virtual machine. Switch to the ”


“And click on”

Shared folders

“. In the right window area, switch ”

Always enabled

“(Always switched on) on. Then click on ”


“And after clicking on”


“Select the desired folder on the hard drive of the host PC. You accept the other settings. Within the virtual machine, the shared folder then appears in the drive or network overview as a new resource. You can now open the new drive and easily exchange files between host and guest.

Appliances: Start systems in the VMware Workstation Player

You can get started quickly with the VMware Workstation Player by loading a pre-configured virtual machine (appliance) from the Internet and then adapting it to your individual needs.

Vmware Workstation Player supports among others the configuration files of Vmware (VMX), Microsoft (VMC) and OVA appliances (Open Virtual Machine). Vmware offers an extensive online archive of finished PCs for use in the player. In the start window of the player, a click on “ a Virtual Appliance” takes you to the corresponding Vmware website, the “Marketplace”. The systems gathered here can be sorted using the navigation bar on the far left, for example by area of ​​application or operating system.

A click on an entry takes you to the preview page with a short description in English including access data and a screenshot as well as a direct download option. In order to integrate the machines loaded from the Internet into the Vmware Workstation Player, select “Open a Virtual Machine” in the start window of the player. The appliance will open. Log in with the access data.


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