I'm trying to figure out if my VMWare tools is running and some of the solutions I found online aren't quite working. If I look at apt list --installed | grep vm I see

open-vm-tools-desktop/kali-rolling,now 2:12.0.0-2 amd64 [installed]
open-vm-tools/kali-rolling,now 2:12.0.0-2 amd64 [installed,automatic]

but if I look at processes running with ps ax | grep vm it doesn't look to be running

    198 ?        S      0:17 [irq/16-vmwgfx]
 231502 ?        Sl     0:01 /usr/bin/vmtoolsd -n vmusr --blockFd 3
 231523 ?        Sl     0:02 /usr/bin/vmtoolsd
 237915 ?        Ssl    0:04 /usr/bin/vmtoolsd
 237989 ?        Ssl    0:00 vmware-vmblock-fuse /run/vmblock-fuse -o rw,subtype=vmware-vmblock,default_permissions,allow_other,dev,suid
 247062 pts/2    S+     0:00 grep --color=auto vm

I've found solutions to restart VM tools with

$ sudo /etc/init.d/vmware-tools start
$ sudo /etc/init.d/vmware-tools stop
$ sudo /etc/init.d/vmware-tools restart

but I don't have any of that in my init.d. The weirdest thing is, sometimes copy/paste into and out of the VM work and then seemingly randomly it stops, that's the real root issue here if anyone knows what's ultimately wrong. The "Reinstall VMWare Tools..." is also greyed out on my licensed VMWare Workstation 15.5

Edit: additionally I tried this answer https://unix.stackexchange.com/a/312820 and now I have removed open-vm-tools but sudo apt-get install open-vm-tools-desktop fuse is not working, saying I have broken packages:

Reading package lists... Done
Building dependency tree... Done
Reading state information... Done
Some packages could not be installed. This may mean that you have
requested an impossible situation or if you are using the unstable
distribution that some required packages have not yet been created
or been moved out of Incoming.
The following information may help to resolve the situation:

The following packages have unmet dependencies:
 fuse3 : Breaks: fuse
E: Unable to correct problems, you have held broken packages.
  • 1
    I'm confused where you say "it doesn't look to be running" but then show /usr/bin/vmtoolsd in the process table. I believe that is (was) the vmtools daemon.
    – Jeff Schaller
    May 14, 2022 at 1:46

2 Answers 2


As for Open VM Tools v 11.0.x the valid steps are (without guest OS restart):

systemctl status vmtoolsd # <-- says "inactive"
systemctl start vmtoolsd
systemctl status vmtoolsd # <-- says "running"
  • of course the systemctl restart vmtoolsd, systemctl stop vmtoolsd, systemctl enable vmtoolsd, etc. are valid too ;-P
    – BBQ
    Dec 9, 2022 at 9:28

This works for me.

sudo apt-get install fuse && reboot

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