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Linux Mac OSX

Using vmware server console on Mac OSX

Just recently I’ve been experimenting with VMWare Server on a Linux host and although it’s easy enough to use the console to manage it from a Windows PC, I normally only have my aging PowerBook to hand.
Since there’s no proper OSX console application for VMWare (why not!?), I needed to figure out a different way to manage the virtual servers.
Two options immediately spring to mind – (1) Fire up Virtual PC, Start Windows, Use the Windows console, or (2) Find a way to use the Linux VMWare console.


Since (1) obviously requires a copy of Virtual PC and Windows to be installed within Virtual PC, unless you have a high spec PowerPC based machine this is going to be quite slow. Users of an Intel mac can use Parallels and run the Windows console at a much better speed but PowerBooks are PowerPC based so I’m out of luck there.
That leaves option (2) which I will detail below.
Prerequisites:
* X11 server installed on OSX.
* xauth binary available on the Linux VMWare host
* ssh access from OSX to Linux host.
Start the X11 application in OSX (Applications -> Utilities -> X11)
When it opens an xterm you should be able to run: ssh -Y username@server.host.name
If all goes well, after you’ve entered your username, you should see something like this:
/usr/bin/xauth: creating new authority file /home/username/.Xauthority
followed by your normal shell prompt on server.host.name.
At this point, echo $DISPLAY should show something like localhost:10.0 and running the vmware binary /usr/bin/vmware will hopefully open the Linux VMWare console on your Mac display!