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Setting Preferences for VMware Workstation

Setting Preferences for VMware Workstation

The Preferences dialog box allows you to change a number of settings that apply to VMware Workstation itself, no matter what virtual machine you are running. The settings on the Workspace, Input and Hot Keys tabs apply to the user currently logged on to the host computer. They do not affect settings made by any other user on the computer. The settings on the Memory and Lockout tabs apply no matter what virtual machine is running or who is logged on to the host computer. The settings on the Priority tab apply to all virtual machines for the user currently logged on to the host computer. They do not affect settings made by any other user on the computer.

To make changes to these settings, choose Edit > Preferences.

Workspace —

The Workspace tab lets you change the directory in which newly created virtual machines are stored. The directory Workstation uses by default is displayed under Default location for virtual machines. To set a different directory, type in the path or click Browse to navigate to the directory you want to use. Workstation creates a directory for each new virtual machine under the directory you specify here.

If you select Remember opened virtual machines between sessions check box, you see a tab for each opened virtual machine in the virtual machine window the next time you start Workstation. A virtual machine is considered opened if both of the following conditions are true:

  • The virtual machine was left open.
  • The virtual machine was powered on and off or powered on and suspended.

Use the Check for updates automatically drop-down list to determine how often VMware Workstation checks to see if new versions of the product are available. You can choose daily, weekly or monthly automatic checks or choose Never to turn off automatic checking. You can check manually at any time by choosing Help > Check for Updates on the Web.

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Input —

The Input tab lets you adjust the way that the virtual machine captures control of keyboard and mouse.

Note: The Grab when cursor enters window option allows you to move the mouse pointer back into the virtual machine window easily if you have been working in the virtual machine, then temporarily moved the mouse pointer outside the virtual machine window. The mouse pointer is grabbed only when VMware Workstation has focus (is the active application). Also, if you release the mouse pointer by pressing a hot-key combination — Ctrl-Alt by default — you must click inside the virtual machine window to make VMware Workstation grab the mouse pointer again.

Hot keys —

The Hot Key tab lets you change the key combination that determines whether certain combinations of keys are passed to the guest operating system or intercepted by VMware Workstation.

Note: Because Ctrl-Alt is the key combination used to tell VMware Workstation to release (ungrab) mouse and keyboard input, combinations that include Ctrl-Alt are not passed to the guest operating system. If you need to use such a combination — for example, use Ctrl-Alt-<Fkey> to switch between Linux workspaces in a virtual machine — press Ctrl-Alt-Space, release Space without releasing Ctrl and Alt, then press the third key of the key combination you want to send to the guest.

Using this dialog box, you can also construct your own custom hot-key combination.

Memory usage—

The Memory tab lets you adjust the amount of physical RAM that can be used by all running virtual machines. It also lets you adjust how much virtual machine memory may be swapped to disk, allowing you to run more or larger virtual machines if you are willing to accept slower performance.

For details on adjusting memory settings in VMware Workstation, see Memory Usage Notes.

Process priorities —

The Priority tab on a Windows host lets you determine the priority that the Windows process scheduler gives to your virtual machines when mouse and keyboard input are going to a particular virtual machine and when input is not going to that virtual machine.

You can adjust these settings to improve overall system performance based on the relative priority of work you are doing in various virtual machines and on the host computer.

To change the settings for a particular virtual machine, and override the global settings, open the virtual machine you want to adjust, choose VM > Settings, click the Options tab, select Advanced, then use the drop-down lists under Process priorities to make the setting you want for that virtual machine.

There is no corresponding setting on a Linux host.

Administrative lockout for certain features —

The Lockout tab on a Windows host lets you restrict who can create new virtual machines, edit virtual machine configurations and change networking settings. For details, see Locking Out Interface Features.

There are no corresponding settings on a Linux host.

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