You can use a physical serial port, an output file, or a named pipe to configure a serial port for a virtual machine.


In the Virtual Machine Properties Editor, click the Hardware tab.


Click the appropriate Serial port in the Hardware list.


If you selected Use physical serial port on the host, use the drop-down menu to select the port on the host computer that you want to use for this serial connection.


If you selected Use output file, browse to the location of the file on the host that you want to use to store the output of the virtual serial port.


If you selected Use named pipe, use the default pipe name or enter another pipe name of your choice in the Pipe Name list.

For a serial pipe for a virtual machine on an ESX host for Linux, enter /tmp/<socket> or another UNIX socket name of your choice.

Then decide whether you are connecting two virtual machines or connecting a virtual machine to an application on the host.


If you are connecting two virtual machines, you must configure a serial port as a named pipe in two virtual machines: a server virtual machine and a client virtual machine.


For the server virtual machine, select Server in the Near end list.


For the client virtual machine, select Client in the Near end list.


Select A virtual machine in the Far end list.


If you are connecting to an application on the host, do the following:


Select Server or Client in the Near end list. In general, select Server if you plan to start this end of the connection first.


Select An application in the Far end list.

By default, the serial port is connected when you power on the virtual machine. You might deselect the Connect at power on check box (optional).


Under I/O Mode, decide whether to configure this serial port to use interrupt mode or polled mode.

Polled mode is of interest primarily to developers who are using debugging tools that communicate over a serial connection.

Polled mode causes the virtual machine to consume a disproportionate share of processor (or CPU) time. This makes the host and other guests run sluggishly. To maintain best performance for applications on the host, select the Yield CPU on poll check box. This forces the affected virtual machine to use interrupt mode, which yields processor (or CPU) time if the only task it is trying to do is poll the virtual serial port.


Click OK to save your changes and close the dialog box.