Ubuntu 14.04 LTS VMware image

The long awaited Ubuntu 14.04 just came out and we have canned the Trusty Tahr for you into a VMware image. VMware Tools are also installed along with some other useful tools. Enjoy!

Image Ubuntu 14.04
VM image size 959 MB
Disk 20+100 GB
VM RAM 1024 MB
VMware Tools yes
User/password user/password
Root password password
ubuntu1404t.zip.torrent
ubuntu1404t.zip

The fine thing about this Ubuntu image is that it has correctly working VMware Tools on board. It is also a relative light download and, of course, it comes with the five year support from the Ubuntu team.

The not so fine thing is its dependence on 3d acceleration by hardware. Unfortunately this can be for some virtualized guest systems still a big problem. It may have to do with your host system and the used graphics driver or even with your hardware. Intel graphics and some AMD chips don't seem to work reliable enough for Ubuntu. If the Ubuntu OS detects these hardware pieces it silently turns the acceleration off and there are more reasons why it may not work. Without the 3d acceleration the Thar is lame.

What can be done to speed up the Trusty Thar if 3d is not working hardware accelerated? We already have disabled effects like window fading and animations with the Compiz config settings manager, which got additionally installed to accomplish this task. That eases the slowness somewhat, but working with the decelerated Thar can be still annoying. There are some things you could try:

  • Use a graphics card in the host machine with support for accelerated OpenGL. Working examples are GeForce, NVidia TNT, Quadro, ATI FireGL or Radeon 8500 (or higher) graphics cards. Owners of Intel and some AMD video cards seem be out of luck.
  • Install the latest available video driver. If you have a graphics card with a Radeon 8500 (or better) GPU, you can try Direct3D acceleration using the radeon-linux driver available from ATI.
  • Try to change the configuration of your host OS regarding the graphics behavior. 3D acceleration has to be activated and maximized.
  • Uncomment the line # mks.gl.allowBlacklistedDrivers = "TRUE" in the Ubuntu.vmx file. This is done by removing the "# " in front of it. If your problem is based on the graphics driver of the host OS, this may help.
  • If both doesn't help, your hardware may not be compatible with Ubuntu's behavior of disabling 3d in some cases. You would have to buy new hardware!

Instead of giving your computer setup a haircut you could also just use some other VMware image from us:

  • For people needing long term support we can recommend the last Ubuntu LTS image, which is the Ubuntu 12.04 image. It comes also with VMware Tools and is much faster as it doesn't require 3d functions.
  • The Lubuntu 14.04 image is a speedy alternative to our default Ubuntu image with the LXDE desktop. It uses the classic start menu instead of Trusty Tahr's DOS-like dash.

Sadly, the older standard Ubuntu 12.04 LTS above uses already this new desktop made by Ubuntu. Its name is Unity, but a better name would be Clunky. Ubuntu likes mismatching or strange names. Thar -- is that a clumsy animal?

If the Trusty Thar comes as a swallow in its LXDE garment, then it is sweet and swift. Just try the Lubuntu image! It also has the long term support and comes like the original with VMware Tools.

Here is what you could do to mitigate the Tahr's clunkiness a bit:

  • Change the global menu at the top of the screen back to window centric menus. Click on the cogs in the launcher aka the System Settings, choose Appearance and then the Behavior tab.
  • Make the launcher automatically hiding in the same place. This setting should make only sense if you generally use the VMware software in full screen mode. Strangely it doesn't make even then sense, because the launcher hides forever and never comes back!
  • The only way to get it back now is to click on the cog in the top right corner, choose System Settings and revert your change. The Thar wants to stay clunky! Perhaps the VMware Player is to blame here, as it may clip off the outermost left pixel of the screen so that the pointer can't trigger the launch of the launcher. All right, now you know the emergency exit.

In order to make this download a bit lighter, we have removed LibreOffice and ThunderBird that were present in the original installation. To get them back, just start Synaptic from the launcher and search for LibreOffice or Thunderbird.

The Compiz config settings manager got installed to be able to control some slowing effects. Additionally we installed the Synaptic package manager. The Ubuntu Software Center can comfortably show you well known packages. But finding something by program name or associated description seems not to be its straights.

Preinstalled software: Firefox, Brasero, Rhythmbox, Empathy, Orca, Transmission, Remmina, CompizConfig, GCC, Synaptic and some more games and utilites.

Zip md5: c05bb690d01462be3ddd5f4b8106b9c5