You can use the vctl command-line utility in VMware Fusion to manage containers.

The vctl (codename: project Nautilus) is a command-line utility bundled inside the VMware Fusion application and is used to manage containers. Most vctl command options are usable in Fusion and Fusion Pro. However, the --publish option is only available with Fusion Pro.

Related binaries/components come bundled in the Fusion application and are available in Applications/VMware folder.

The three main binaries/components of the vctl command-line utility are summarized in the following section.


This is a runtime daemon that runs in the background. The containerd daemon must be started first before you can run any container related operation. To start it, use the vctl system start command and to stop it use the vctl system stop command.


When a new container is started, a new containerd-shim-crx-v2 process is launched and works as an adapter between the container in CRX VM and the containerd daemon.


It is a command-line utility that runs in the foreground and relays the user input to the containerd daemon.

Note: The vctl CLI runs every container inside a lightweight virtual machine, called CRX VM. By default, a CRX VM is created and starts up when a container starts. It shuts down and is removed when the container stops. The name of the CRX VM is same as the container.