A quick-start guide to setting up a Debian guest on VMWare WorkStation 15/16 Player

I don’t know why everything needs to be subtly non-standard, but over the course of the last twenty or so virtual machine reconstructions I’ve come up with a simple checklist for setting up a Debian guest on VMWare’s WorkStation (Windows) and I thought I’d share it here.

  1. Download your Debian .iso here (I recommend the netinst CD image)
  2. Create a new virtual machine using the downloaded .iso and check that the default configuration is satisfactory (I tend to need a little more power, usually 2 CPUs does it for me). Note that increasing the size of a hard disk is for more complicated and risky than a regular user would expect, so give yourself a healthy buffer. In my experience, it’s less painful to rebuild a bigger machine than it is to extend the disk size.
  3. Install the OS — I find the graphical installer to be just fine for my purposes. The two configuration options that are the most impactful are your choice of desktop environment, I usually choose Xfce but I’m starting to like GNOME again. It’s probably a good idea to install the ssh server as well.
  4. Once installation is complete, click the VMWare button at the bottom of the screen…



Adam Fisher / fisher king (@therightstuff)

Software developer and writer of words, currently producing a graphic novel adaptation of Shakespeare's Sonnets! See http://therightstuff.bio.link for details.