Procedure to add VMware Tools to the official CentOS Vagrant boxes
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This procedure installs the open source version of VMware Tools (open-vm-tools) and then compiles and installs the HGFS driver which allows use of VMware's native shared folder support. It is specifically for the official CentOS Vagrant boxes published at

Known issues


  • Current version of VMware Fusion Pro or Workstation Pro. Tested on:
    • Fusion Pro 8.5
    • Workstation Pro 12.5
    • Other versions are untested but should work
  • Current version of Vagrant and Vagrant VMware plugin. Latest tested:
    • Vagrant 1.9.1
    • Vagrant VMware plugin 4.0.15
  • Additional steps may be required if the kernel in the Vagrant guest is updated

Host preparation

  • Copy the VMware Tools installer from the VMware application folder to the guest. The default locations for the installer are:
    • /Applications/VMware\ (OS X)
    • C:\Program Files (x86)\VMware\VMware Workstation\linux.iso (Windows)
  • Use vagrant rsync (OS X) or a SMB synced folder (Windows) to copy the iso into the guest's /vagrant directory

Commands to run within Vagrant guest

Install the EPEL repository (CentOS 6 only)

sudo yum -y install epel-release

Install the open source tools package

This provides all VMware functionality except for the HGFS driver required for synced folders:

sudo yum -y install open-vm-tools

Install build dependencies

sudo yum -y install perl gcc fuse make kernel-devel net-tools policycoreutils-python

Mount the installer iso and extract it to /tmp

mkdir -p /tmp/vmware /tmp/vmware-archive
sudo mount -o loop /vagrant/linux.iso /tmp/vmware
TOOLS_PATH="`ls /tmp/vmware/VMwareTools-*.tar.gz`"
tar xzf ${TOOLS_PATH} -C /tmp/vmware-archive

Install VMware Tools

Both --force-install and --default are required to avoid prompting, as we have already installed open-vm-tools. See for more details:

sudo /tmp/vmware-archive/vmware-tools-distrib/ --force-install --default


sudo umount /tmp/vmware
rm -rf /tmp/vmware /tmp/vmware-archive /vagrant/*.iso
# linux.iso can also be removed from the host

Create a new shared folder using VMware shared folders

It currently isn't possible to override the default rsync synced_folder for /vagrant (this is a known issue). As a workaround, use a different name for the mount point in the guest, by adding a line like this to the Vagrantfile before the final end:

config.vm.synced_folder ".", "/vagrant2"

Restart the VM and test

vagrant reload