Workstation provides a sound device that is compatible with the Sound Blaster AudioPCI and Intel High-Definition Audio Specification. The Workstation sound device is enabled by default.

Workstation supports sound in Windows 95, Windows 98, Windows Me, Windows NT, Windows XP, Windows Vista, Windows 7, Windows Server 2003, Windows Server 2008, and Linux guest operating systems.

Sound support includes pulse code modulation (PCM) output and input. You can play .wav files, MP3 audio, and Real Media audio. MIDI output from Windows guest operating systems is supported by the Windows software synthesizer. MIDI input is not supported, and no MIDI support is available for Linux guest operating systems.

Windows XP, Windows Vista, Windows 7 and most recent Linux distributions detect the sound device and install appropriate drivers for it.

Windows 95, Windows 98, Windows 98SE, and Windows NT 4.0 do not have drivers for the Sound Blaster AudioPCI adapter. To use sound in these guest operating systems, you must download the driver from the Creative Labs Web site and install it in the guest operating systems. Creative Labs has Web sites that serve different regions of the world. The adapter name varies, depending on the region, but usually includes PCI 128.

For Workstation 7.x and earlier virtual machines, the vmaudio driver in VMware Tools is installed in 64-bit Windows XP, Windows 2003, Windows Vista, Windows 2008, and Windows 7 guest operating systems and in 32-bit Windows 2003, Windows Vista, Windows 2008, and Windows 7 guest operating systems.

For Workstation 8.x and later virtual machines, the High-Definition Audio (HD Audio) device is presented by default for both 64-bit and 32-bit Windows Vista and Windows 7 guest operating systems and their server counterparts. Windows provides a driver for HD Audio that is not part of VMware Tools.

On Linux host systems, Workstation 7.x and later supports Advanced Linux Sound Architecture (ALSA). Earlier versions of Workstation use the Open Sound System (OSS) interface for sound playback and recording in virtual machines running on Linux host systems. Unlike OSS, ALSA does not require exclusive access to the sound device. The host system and multiple virtual machines can play sound at the same time.