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VMware kernel configurations

VMware offers a selection of software products to run multiple operating systems on one computer. However when running open source operating systems, their default kernel configuration can be improved by building a custom kernel which only supports the virtual hardware provided by the VMware system. This webpage collects such kernel configurations for different operating systems.


Refer to the FreeBSD handbook chapters Building and Installing a Custom Kernel and FreeBSD as a Guest OS how to compile your system. You should also lower your default timer frequency by setting
in /boot/loader.conf. Other values you could try would be 30, 50, 100. You can also try to install the emulators/open-vm-tools.

The following list contains our FreeBSD kernel configuration files, mainly for use with VMware, but some are for running directly on specific servers.

FreeBSD kernel compilation

I use freebsd-kernel.sh to compile my kernel, once I have copied the kernel configuration file into the appropriate directory in /usr/src/sys/. Remember to specifiy the configuration filename as the first argument to the script.


Debian kernel compilation

Kernel compilation the Debian way is not as straight forward as simply compiling your vanilla Torvald's kernel. My little script compile-debian-kernel.sh helps me compiling a kernel .deb. You should run this kernel from the lop level directory of your kernel sources. You should modify the REVISION variable when compiling your own kernels.

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