Did you pay the vTax?!

If you "vmware", then vmrun should be your screwdriver.

If you only "Hyper-V" then know that vmrun is like "Set-VM"-equivalent (in Powershell-speech).

Among other things, vmrun allows you to boot & reboot your VMs by skipping the screamingly fast (!) WEB-UI.

vmrun relies on webservices to send commands to the host but is invoked from the CLI.

For it to work, you need a client (say a linux distro of your liking), and a vSphere server with a couple of VMs.

In my examples below, I'll be referring to vSphere 4.1 Server ( managed from an Ubuntu box.


vmrun requirements.

To use vmrun, you'll need the VIX Standalone API Libraries.

You can Download the VIX Standalone API Libraries from the vmware website ('though you'll have to register first).

Register with vmware (it's free), then download and install the VIX standalone API libraries.

  • Follow the enclosed instructions on how to install the VIX API libs to your system.

I downloaded and installed the VIX Standalone API Libraries on my occasional Ubuntu client of choice.


vmrun -h https://vSphere-IPAddr:8333/sdk -u root -p pwd list.

This command will provide you a list of available VMs.

It relies on the list parameter.

Once you installed VIX, from your Linux client type:

[[email protected] ubudevsrv1]# vmrun -h -u root -p [email protected] list


Total running VMs: 7
[standard] ubuntu_server_1/Ubuntu.vmx
[standard] ubuntu_server_2/Ubuntu.vmx
[standard] centos_server_1/centos-5.3-i386-server.vmx
[standard] ubuntu_server_3/Ubuntu 9.04 Server.vmx
[standard] ubuntu_server_4/Ubuntu.vmx
[standard] centos_server_2/Centos-5.5.vmx
[standard] centos_server_3/CentOS-5.2.vmx

You can interact with those VMs remotely.


vmrun -h https://vSphere-IPAddr:8333/sdk -u root -p pwd stop "[type] vm-name.vmx".

This second command will show you how to shutdown a VM.


[[email protected] ubudevsrv1]# vmrun -h -u root -p [email protected] stop "[standard] centos_server_1/centos-5.3-i386-server.vmx"

The above will gracefully Shutdown (provided your VM does have the "VMWARE Tools" installed), the VM named "[standard] centos_server_1/centos-5.3-i386-server.vmx".

For the above command to work, please note you'll have to refer to the VM by enclosing any spaces and brackets within double quotes ("...").


vmrun -h https://vSphere-IPAddr:8333/sdk -u root -p pwd start "[type] vm-name.vmx".

This command will simply Boot your VM of choice.


[[email protected] ubudevsrv1]# vmrun -h -u root -p [email protected] start "[standard] ubuntu_server_1/Ubuntu.vmx"

Will Boot the VM named [standard] ubuntu_server_1/Ubuntu.vmx.


vmrun -h https://vSphere-IPAddr:8333/sdk -u root -p pwd reset "[type] vm-name.vmx".

Finally, if you wish to Restart your VM, use the reset parameter.


[[email protected] ubudevsrv1]# vmrun -h -u root -p [email protected] reset "[standard] centos_server_2/Centos-5.5.vmx"

The above command will Reboot the VM named "[standard] centos_server_2/Centos-5.5.vmx".

Senior Professional Network and Computer Systems Engineer during work hours and father when home.

Andrea strives to deliver outstanding customer service and heaps of love towards his family.

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4 most useful vmrun commands.
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