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Open Virtual Machine Tools

Linux
Location: Portland 255 Level: Intermediate
Average rating: ***..
(3.75, 4 ratings)

The open-vm-tools project consists of a set of open-sourced applications and drivers that are intended to enrich the experience of working with a virtualized guest operating system. As they were originally derived from the VMware Tools, the open-vm-tools currently function under a VMware hypervisor for x86 and x86_64 VMs, but there is definite interest to extend that support to other hypervisors and architectures.

Some of the features include:

  • cross-platform drag n’ drop between guest and host operating systems
  • cross-platform filesystem sharing between guest and host
  • better resource management via guest memory ballooning and more.

At the time of writing, the codebase is intended for Linux,
FreeBSD, and Solaris guests, though it should be portable to other
POSIX-compliant guests as well.

In this talk, we will start with a very brief overview
of virtualizing guest operating systems. The body of the talk will
describe the ways that open-vm-tools provides improvements in
performance, functionality, and user experience. We will also describe ongoing efforts towards integrating these tools with linux distributions for better “out-of-the-box” experience. Finally, we will close with an outline of the status of open-vm-tools as a project, and how interested users may contribute to the project.

Photo of Adar Dembo

Adar Dembo

VMware Inc.

Adar has been a VMware employee for about 2.5 years, working primarily on the VMware Tools. His FOSS activity has primarily revolved around the open-vm-tools project, though he did help develop a filesystem for the Linux kernel.

OSCON 2008