Installing VMware Player on a Windows PC

Many budding roboticists want to work with ROS running on Ubuntu Linux, but would prefer to use Windows as their primary operating system.

Well, this configuration is certainly possible, and some would consider even preferable, as doing so may get you the best of all worlds! The answer to how to go about that, is to employ a virtual machine. Don’t worry, this may sound complicated, but it’s really quite easy. In this tutorial, we’re going to dive right in and show you how to get setup with ROS, running under Ubuntu in a VMware Workstation Player virtual machine. We’ll start from scratch and provide step-by-step information to guide you through the process.

Install VMware Workstation Player

VMware is an application that users can install on a Windows machine which acts as a kind of wrapper around Ubuntu, allowing it to run like a regular application on the Windows desktop. The free version is available for non-commercial, personal and home use. A google search of “vmware free player” will get you to the site where you can download and install it. I found this page:

VMware Workstation Player 15.0

Select the “Download” button. When you begin the download process (for Player 15.0.2), it will present a dialog box similar to:

Hit “Save File” in the usual manner and save the file to your computer, and then run it. Follow the instructions to install the Player.

Hit “Next”.

Accept the terms and hit “Next”. 

Hit “Next”. 

Hit “Next”. 

Hit “Next”.

Hit “Install”. The setup wizard will run, after which it should report completion.

Assuming you got through that successfully, you can hit “Finish” and you are done with the install of VMware Player!

Running VMware Workstation Player

Check your Windows start menu for the player and start it (or start it from your desktop).

Select “Continue”.

Hit “Finish”.

You are now running VMware Player! Next we’ll tackle creating and running a new virtual machine…