VMware, i3 and multiple monitors

For a while now I’ve been trying to set up VMware to work with multiple monitors, in a Linux guest. With some windowmanagers it works out of the box without any issue, such as with Unity. I never figured out how to do it with xmonad, and recently I switched to i3 just to try something new. The damn “Cycle multiple monitors” button didn’t work here either. When I tried it, a message popped up saying:

The virtual machine must have up-to-date VMware Tools installed and running.

..which it had! At this point I had installed vmware-tools, which is described as:

“A suite of utilities that enhances the performance of the virtual machine’s guest operating system and improves management of the virtual machine”

However, I found a solution! Place the following line in your i3 configuration file, whether it be ~/.i3/config or ~/.config/i3/config:

..and that’s it! Reload your i3 configuration, and now you should be able to press the “Cycle multiple monitors” button and have dual monitors in your VMware guest!

Now, if you’re using open-vm-tools instead of the native vmware-tools, do what Fabian suggested – use the following line in your config-file instead:

It should work!

4 thoughts on “VMware, i3 and multiple monitors

  1. Fabian

    Had exactly the same problem. You brought me on the right way, it worked for me with:

    exec –no-startup-id vmware-user-suid-wrapper

    Thank you!

    1. Jorge Enrique Barrera Post author

      Thank you for letting me know. :) I’ll give your solution a try the next time I set i3 up!

      1. Jorge Enrique Barrera Post author

        And so I did! You’re right, it worked like a charm. :) This time around I tried using open-vm-tools instead of the native vmware-tools. I’ve added your suggestion to the post, thank you!

  2. Chris

    Looks like this tip recently stopped working.
    Running Arch with i3 Kernel 4.20 and VMWare Workstation Pro 14, I still get the message about not having a supported window manager


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