Install VMWare Workstation 16.x Pro on CentOS 8

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If you are the kind of a person who always needs a place to set up labs on your computer to experiment and learn, then having a hypervisor is the best thing you can have as long as your computer can support virtualization. The blessings of virtualization have been felt not only to individuals but to large enterprises and organizations. The costs it has saved, the flexibility is has afforded many and the solutions it has empowered is enough to applaud this invention.

Among many other Hypervisors, the name that most people get to learn fast is VMWare. It is well known due to the vast amount of solutions they provide and built especially around Hypervisors. They provide enterprise solutions mostly but VMWare Workstation Pro can be downloaded and used in Windows and Linux.

Enough with the introductions now. The steps that follow will lead you to install VMWare Workstation Pro in CentOS 8 Desktop. To use VMWare, your computer must support virtualization. We hope you already have the Operating System installed.

Step 1: Update and install all required packages including kernel-headers

Kernel headers are very important for VMWare to run. In this step, we will update, upgrade and install kernel-headers on our computer. Open up your terminal and issue the commands below. Press “Y” if prompted throughout the process

sudo dnf -y install epel-release
sudo dnf config-manager --set-enabled powertools
sudo dnf -y update

Once that is done, kindly reboot your CentOS 8 box.

Later, make sure that the version of kernel-devel installed is similar to the version of your running kernel. You can check this by issuing the commands below:

sudo rpm -q kernel-devel
uname -r

In case by any chance, you find that the versions do not match, update your Kernel by issuing the command below and then reboot your computer.

sudo dnf update kernel-*

Check to ensure that Kernel headers and the kernel have the same version number as it had been illustrated above.

Step 2: Download VMWare Workstation

Open your favorite browser and go to the download page of VMWare Workstation. Click on the “Download Now” link. Save it in a directory you prefer to begin downloading the file.

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Download progress. Depending on your internet speed, this may be brief of a bit long.

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You can as well download the installer using wget command line tool:

### VMware Workstation Pro ###
wget https://download3.vmware.com/software/wkst/file/VMware-Workstation-Full-16.2.1-18811642.x86_64.bundle

### VMware Workstation Player ###
wget https://download3.vmware.com/software/player/file/VMware-Player-Full-16.2.1-18811642.x86_64.bundle

Step 3: Install all Dependencies required

VMware Workstation Pro 16 needs build tools necessary for it to build the required VMware Kernel Modules. Install development tools in CentOS 8 by running the command below in your terminal. Press “y” if prompted throughout the installation process.

sudo dnf -y groupinstall "Development Tools"

After your installation has finished, one other dependency is required known as elfutils-libelf-devel. This will facilitate VMware Kernel Module building. Install it by running the command as shown below.

sudo dnf -y install elfutils-libelf-devel zlib-devel

Step 4: Prepare VMWare Workstation Pro file

Navigate to the directory where you downloaded VMWare in Step 2. For me, it was dropped in “Downloads” folder.

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While in there, make the downloaded VMWare file executable

### VMware Workstation Pro ###
chmod +x VMware-Workstation-Full-*.x86_64.bundle

### VMware Workstation Player ###
chmod +x VMware-Player-Full-*.x86_64.bundle

Step 5: Install VMWare Workstation Pro

After you have made the file executable, proceed to install VMWare Workstation Pro as shown below

$ sudo ./VMware-Workstation-Full-*.x86_64.bundle
Extracting VMware Installer...done.
Installing VMware Workstation 16.2.1
    Configuring...
[######################################################################] 100%
Installation was successful.

Step 6: Start VMWare Workstation Pro

Our package should be installed by now. To make sure of that, click on “Activities” and enter “vmware” in the search field. It should pop even before you finish typing. Click on it to launch this pretty baby.

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Accept the License terms and hit “Next

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You will be presented with another license to accept. Accept it and click “Next

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Next, it will ask you if you prefer the application to check updates as it starts. Choose the one you like and hit “Next“.

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If you would wish to join VMWare’s Customer Experience Improvement Program, you can in this step. Choose the radio button you are inclined to and click “Next“.

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Enter the user that will initially connect to the workstation server. After you are done, click on “Next“.

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Configure where your shared virtual machines will reside in this step and press “Next“.

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Specify the port that the workstation server will be listening from and then click on “Next

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If you already have your key purchased, you can key it in in this step. You can use the product between 15 to 30 days as well. Kindly hit “Finish” after you are done.

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Enter the password of the user you specified earlier then click “Authenticate

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The installation is finally done. Click “OK” on the small pop up window and proceed to begin your setups.

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Conclusion

VMWare workstation is successfully installed and configured. All that remains is for you to make good use of it day by day. Thank you for visiting and spending your time on the blog.

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A systems engineer with excellent skills in systems administration, cloud computing, systems deployment, virtualization, containers, and a certified ethical hacker.