You can import an Open Virtualization Format (OVF) virtual machine and run it in Workstation. Workstation converts the virtual machine from OVF format to VMware runtime (.vmx) format. You can import both .ovf and .ova files.

OVF is a platform-independent, efficient, extensible, and open packaging and distribution format for virtual machines. For example, you can import OVF virtual machines exported from VMware Fusion™ into Workstation. You can import OVF 1.0 and later files only.

You can also use the standalone OVF Tool to convert an OVF virtual machine to VMware runtime format. The standalone version of the OVF Tool is installed in the Workstation installation directory under OVFTool. See the OVF Tool User Guide on the VMware Web site for information on using the OVF Tool.


In Workstation, select File > Open.


Browse to the .ovf or .ova file and click Open.


Type a name for the virtual machine, type or browse to the directory for the virtual machine files, and click Import.

Workstation performs OVF specification conformance and virtual hardware compliance checks. A status bar indicates the progress of the import process.


If the import fails, click Retry to try again, or click Cancel to cancel the import.

If you retry the import, Workstation relaxes the OVF specification conformance and virtual hardware compliance checks and you might not be able to use the virtual machine in Workstation.

After Workstation successfully imports the OVF virtual machine, the virtual machine appears in the virtual machine library.