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I am running a VM on two monitors, in fullscreen exclusive mode.

I would like to be able to minimize the VM and mess around in the Host, then go back to the VM.

I can do this by pressing CTRL+ALT to get out of fullscreen mode, but this puts the VM back onto a single monitor, which moves all my VM's windows back to the main virtual screen. This is annoying, because when I come back to the VM, I have to go back to multiple monitor mode, and move windows back to where they should be.

Is there a way to temporarily escape from fullscreen exclusive mode, without disturbing multi-monitor layout?

I should note that I'm only using exclusive mode to get rid of the popup toolbar that otherwise appears when your mouse gets too close to the top of the screen. If there's another way to kill that, please let me know.

My host and guest are both Windows 7 x64, and I'm running VMWare Workstation 8.

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up vote 3 down vote accepted

You can use these keyboard shortcuts from the default VMWare configuration:

  1. Ctrl+Alt: Ungrab cursor from guest
  2. Win+D: Show host desktop

To return to the guest screen, just click on the VMWare window in the taskbar. The multiple monitor configuration will persist.

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I no longer have VMWare installed (this question was 3 years ago!) to test.. What version did you test this on? In VMWare 8, Ctrl+Alt cancelled multi-monitor (as I mention in the question). – Blorgbeard Jun 17 '15 at 3:30
It no longer happens in VMware 10 – Jairo Honorio Jun 18 '15 at 4:19
This works... kind of annoying to have to Win+D the host but less steps then what the OP was complaining about – Cynapse Apr 19 at 22:47

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