VMWare Workstation Player on Azure VM for testing

VMWare Workstation Player on Azure VM for testing | Updated September 2021

I had a request to run VMWare Workstation Player on an Azure VM for some testing and labs. Challenge accepted!

UPDATE: Since version 15.5, VMware Workstation & Player Supports Host Hyper-V Mode. Find out more here & here

Demo environment:

Azure VM Standard E4s_v4 Gen 1 running Windows 10 2004 Enterprise 

I tested it also with Windows 10 20H2 Enterprise, and since the Hyper-V mode is supported, it should run at all Windows Client & Server OSs that support nested virtualization and to all E_v4 & D_v4 Azure VM Serries.

To enable the Hyper-V Mode Support we need first to enable Hyper-V at the Windows Host via the add/remove features GUIor PowerShell

Via PowerShell Run:

Enable-WindowsOptionalFeature -Online -FeatureName HypervisorPlatform -All
Enable-WindowsOptionalFeature -Online -FeatureName Microsoft-Hyper-V -All

and restart

Installed VMWare Workstation Player 16.0 free for non-commercial use, download from here: VMware Workstation Player – VMware Customer Connect

After the installation, I opened the VMWare Workstation Player and I managed to set up and run a Windows 10 VM.

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13 comments

  1. Thank you for this walkthrough. I’ve tried to run VMware in an Azure VM earlier and failed multiple times. So reading this is great news and indeed it works for me!
    Thanks for sharing.

  2. sadly didnt work for me i tried every thing in several forums .
    azure vm win server datacenter 2016 hyper v windows 10 20h2

  3. This didnt work for me either. Trying to run a VM inside workstation pro on a Azure VM. Still getting the “workstation and HyperV aren’t compatible” message

  4. Hi,

    did you disabled the hyperv by running the below? (admin cmd and restart of course)
    execute .\DG_Readiness_Tool_v3.6.ps1 -disable
    execute bcdedit /deletevalue hypervisorlaunchtype
    execute bcdedit /set hypervisorlaunchtype off

    It seems that the hyperv is still enabled at your VM.

  5. Hello,

    I tried all the commands mentioned in your article and it still doesnt work. Have tried different version of VMware workstations like 12,14,15,5,5 and 16 pro with different OS offered by Azure like Windows N Pro, Windows 10 20H2 and Windows 2012/2016. It still gives the same error on workstation ad well as player.

    We can’t get into the BIOS of VM hosted on Azure. So, its very frustrating that after trying all the methods, its just not working out. Any suggestions would be helpful.

    Note : I am installing a VM with above mentioned OS.
    On that I am installing workstation and running these commands with reboot as suggested.
    Still NO LUCK. 🙁

    Regards

    1. Hi Vishwas Mehra,

      The problem is not at the Windows Version nor the VMware WS version. Maybe the problem is at the Azure VM Size.
      e.g. I was able to make it work at an E4s_v4 VM. It should work at the D_v3 VMs too, but many people told me that they work only at the E_v4 series.

      You can find what VMs have the “Nested Virtualization” feature and try them.

  6. I have plans to deploy vRA and vSphere lab on the Azure VM with VMware workstation. Is it possible to do so with a high end configuration VM.

    Server CPU Memory Storage
    vCenter Server(Tiny) 2 12 415
    ESXi host 8 24 150
    vRealize Lifecycle Manager 2 6 78
    VMware Identity Manager 8 16 100
    vRealize Automation 12 42 246

  7. Hello,

    Thank you for the article, it indeed is helpful but this is not a permanent solution, each time we have to run the VM we have to repeat all the steps, is there a way we can permanently make these changes?

    Thank you

  8. It doesn´t work. I´ve tried with many sizes and it just shows the same error. I think it was waste of time, I am going to try in GCP

  9. Hi Pantelis Apostolidis,
    I’m using E_v4 series and still its not working also i cross verified hyper V and it is disabled could you suggest anything other possible ways regarding this

    1. Since version 15.5, VMware Workstation & Player Supports Host Hyper-V Mode. Find out more here & here

      To enable the Hyper-V Mode Support we need first to enable Hyper-V at the Windows Host via the add/remove features GUIor PowerShell

      Via PowerShell Run:

      Enable-WindowsOptionalFeature -Online -FeatureName HypervisorPlatform -All
      Enable-WindowsOptionalFeature -Online -FeatureName Microsoft-Hyper-V -All

      then install VMware Workstation. check my update on the post.

  10. Hello, thank you for these steps. I was able to create a VM inside Standard E4s_v4 size Azure VM via the above steps. One additional question? How can we access the nested VM from another Azure VM in the same vNet? In a non-Azure environment, I usually use bridge connection for this and the nested VM gets an IP assigned. But any idea how to do for a nested VM in Azure?

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