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Don’t omit the VMware Tools!

So, you are very proud of yourself because you can roll out Windows virtual systems like popcorn, right? Well, don’t forget to ensure that you are using the correct version of VMware tools. This is important because it provides an optimized inventory of hardware for the guest operating system. On a Windows guest operating system (OS), take a look at the device manager and see how many devices have VMware, Inc. listed as the manufacturer for the device. The VMware tools will apply the correct drivers to the SCSI and RAID controllers, network interfaces, video display adapters, and many more.

Why Does This Matter?

The presence of VMware tools is good, but just as important is the version of VMware tools. Each VMware product has its own version of VMware tools, and if you migrate via VMotion or the VMware converter, your version of the tools may be out of date. Some items will be natively recognized with obselete versions of VMware tools, while others may not yet be determined in the Device Manager. The best candidate here is the network interface. For example, if you have a virtual machine hosted on VMware ESX 2.5.4 and you wish to migrate this guest to your newer VMware ESX 3.0.2 system. Your migration via your tool of choice will proceed correctly enough, but you may soon discover an issue with the VM.

How do I Install VMware Tools?

Installing VMware Tools is quite easy, and VMware has provided a knowledge base article for each VMware product (ESX, Workstation, etc.) Click here to view the knowledge base article.

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Thats very nice, but im still missing af easy way to do a unattended installation of vmware tools, that sets the graphics card, in the right mode, for optimal performance. Vmtools, need to be upgraded, after a lot of ESX updates, and it's no fun, to do a manual install og 500 VM's
Robert: Thanks for the comment, to push VMWare Tools to the masses, this may be a point in the correct direction. For Windows systems, the VMWare tools is available as an .MSI file, so you can use SMS, Active Directory, or scripted installations to install the tools.
In the upcoming 3.5 release they are supposed to have patching tools that will patch the ESX OS as well as patch the VM tools.