VMWare Workstation Pro on Ubuntu 20.04 – Running an encrypted VM at login

Written by James McDonald

June 28, 2021

Create a dot desktop file ( ~/.config/autostart/start-windows-10.desktop)

[Desktop Entry]
Name=Run Windows 10 Pro at Login
Comment=Run Windows 10 Pro at Login
Exec=vmrun -T ws -vp "Your-VM-Password" start /home/jm/vmware/Windows10Pro/Windows\ 10\ Pro\ Fix.vmx nogui

Note the important option after the vmx file argument nogui if you don’t put nogui your get “Error: The operation is not supported”

This will start the VM when you login to your Ubuntu workstation. But it will be headless

Note: You VM encryption password is available to anyone with read permissions on dot desktop file.

How to connect to a Headless Virtual Machine

Option 1

Start VMWare Workstation
Run the VM as you normally would, providing the encryption password

Option 2

Enable remote desktop on the VM and connect to it via RDP


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