How to install Windows 8 on VMware Player

In my previous post, I explain how to install Windows 8 on VMware Workstation. But some of you may not have a license to the software and would choose VMware Player instead.

Either option should be preferred by anyone not ready to put Windows 8 into production. Virtualization offers many advantages for testing the new operating system, while minimizing effects on your primary PC.

Prerequisites to install Windows 8 in VMware Player:

Before getting down to business you need to download  VMware Player and of course Windows 8 ISO. Microsoft provides a 90-day trial for Windows 8 that is currently available to download, but if you have another Windows 8 ISO available you can use that instead. This how-to covers general guidelines that are valid for any Windows 8 version and requires VMware Player to be installed beforehand.

To install Windows 8 from VMware Player follow the next steps:

  1. Open VMware Player and select "Create a New Virtual Machine".
  2. Select "Installer disc image file (iso) and click "Browse" then navigate to the location where Windows 8 ISO is downloaded/located, select it and click "Open".
  3. Click Next and insert the "Windows product key" if you have one; if you don't have one just leave the fields empty and click "Next" and validate the prompt.
  4. Type a new name for "Virtual machine name" or leave it as is.
  5. Select the location of the virtual machine and make sure you have at least 16GB for the 32-bit Windows 8 and 20GB for the 64-bit Windows 8 free space in the selected location -- 30GB is better to avoid running out of free space.
  6. Select "Store virtual disk as a single file" to keep the virtual HDD in a single file and optimize performance then click "Next".
  7. At the next screen click on "Customize Hardware..." go to "Memory" -- Microsoft recommends a minimum of 1GB for 32-bit Windows 8 and 2GB for 64-bit Windows 8, but you should double the minimum requirements for a smoother operation.
  8. At the "Processors" dialog box select the "Number of processor cores" available for your CPU.
  9. Click "Close" then "Finish" to complete the virtual machine creation process and install Windows 8.

You will be offered a prompt for "VMware Tools for Windows 2000 and later" where you must click "Download and Install." If there are any devices that can be attached to the virtual machine VMware Player will notify you during the install process.

After the process is completed you are able to use Windows 8 in VMware Player.

Photo Credit: olly/Shutterstock

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