Can you hear me now? Tales from a Cisco voice instructor

Jan 20 2010   9:34PM GMT

VNC to VMware

Dave Bateman Dave Bateman Profile: Dave Bateman

If you haven’t heard of VMware yet, it is software that allows you to run multiple OS images on a PC. Each image acts like a separate PC. The buzz word for this type of technology is “Vituralization.” There are many reasons people choose this type of deployment. For instance, I use it in a lab environment where I need multiple servers running. The number of virtual servers you can run at once is based on the hardware you have and the resources that each virtual server will require.

The other day I had three virtual servers running, and I wanted to display the desktop of all three servers at the same time, but VMware only displayed one desktop at a time. The current version of VMware has a feature called, “Remote Display.” When enabled, you can VNC directly into that virtual server. So, I configured this on each server and created a VNC connection to each one. This allowed me to see all three desktops at the same time.

The setup is pretty easy, but I did make one or two false assumptions so I thought I’d document how to configure this to help you avoid the issues I ran into.

1. Select the VM image from within VMware console and go to Settings.

Figure 1

Figure 1

2. Select the Options tab and click Remote Display.

Figure 2

Figure 2

3. Check the Enable remote display check box and enter a port number in the Port field. The port number  must be unique for each image.

Figure 3

Figure 3

4. Click OK and start the image.

Once the image starts, you can VNC to it using the VNCviewer software. Once you launch VNCviewer, you need to specify the IP address of the host machine (not the IP address of the image you are trying to access) and the port number of the image. For insance, in Figure 4, 10.1.14 is the IP address of the host machine and 5903 is the port number I assigned in the remote display setting.

Figure 4

Figure 4

You can also use this feature to VNC to an image from a remote system. This is useful if the VM server is not local and you want access directly to the image.

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