What are the Differences Between the Open-VM-Tools package and VMware Tools package

Question.
Many of the system administrator asked whether they need to install Open-VM-Tools package or VMware Tools package that ships with ESX/ESXi VMware products.

Answer.
VMware Tools is a suite of utilities that enhances the performance of the virtual machine’s guest operating system and improves management of the virtual machine.

How to Install Vmware-tools for windows
How to Install Vmware-tools for Linux

The Open Virtual Machine Tools (open-vm-tools) are the open source implementation of VMware Tools. They consists of a suite of virtualization utilities that improves the functionality, administration, and management of virtual machines within a VMware environment. As virtualization technology rapidly becomes mainstream, each virtualization solution provider implements their own set of tools and utilities to supplement the guest virtual machine. The primary purpose for open-vm-tools is to enable operating system vendors and/or communities and virtual appliance vendors to bundle VMware Tools into their product releases.

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open-vm-tools is available with these operating systems:

  • Fedora 19 and later releases
  • Debian 7.x and later releases
  • openSUSE 11.x and later releases
  • Recent Ubuntu releases (12.04 LTS, 13.10 and later)
  • Red Hat Enterprise Linux 7.0 and later releases
  • SUSE Linux Enterprise 12 – available Q4 2014
  • CentOS 7
  • Oracle Linux 7

Note : If your OS is not listed above, i would suggest you to install VMware Tools package that ships with ESX/ESXi VMware products.

VMware support policy

  • VMware recommends using open-vm-tools redistributed by operating system vendors.
  • VMware fully supports virtual machines that include open-vm-tools redistributed by operating system vendors, which is done in collaboration with the OS vendor and OS communities. However, the operating system release must be published as certified by the specific VMware product in the online VMware Compatibility Guide.
  • VMware provides assistance to operating system vendors and communities with the integration of open-vm-tools with OS releases.
  • VMware fully supports virtual appliances that include open-vm-tools, which is done in collaboration with the virtual appliance vendor.
  • VMware does not recommend removing open-vm-tools redistributed by operating system vendors.
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References :
http://kb.vmware.com/selfservice/microsites/search.do?language=en_US&cmd=displayKC&externalId=2073803
http://partnerweb.vmware.com/GOSIG/CentOS_7.html

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