Unpack the download and run
sudo ./vmware-install.pl. You should be fine accepting all the default settings.
If your install fails, and you can’t reinstall because “A previous installation of VMware software has been detected”, simply
mv /etc/vmware /var/tmp/trash and try again.
Start the server by just saying
Download ready-to-run virtual machines here, or pop a standard OS install CD and create a new virtual machine. When the VM boots it will read from the CD and install as normal. You can also direct your VM to boot from an ISO.
When your VM is set up you’ll see a little warning at the bottom: “You do not have VMWare Tools installed.” You want VMWare tools; they make your guest machine run smoother. Under the “VM” menu choose “Install VMWare tools…” to be guided through the installation process.