Just read my e-mail, which I should check more often, and I found an invitation
to be a Beta tester for VMware 5. I like to test, I like VMware, I want to see the company continue, so,
I downloaded the Beta Software... over 60MB.
I started using VMware in September or October of 1999. A new aquaintance at my
new place of employment introduced me to it. Prior to that I was just using the dual boot method. When I
started using VMware it was 'free' to students and non-profit people. But like everything else they started
charging money ... period. I paid and got updates until I lost my job. Then due to lack of funds and the
newer high prices of VMware ... I could not afford to update. However, I had version 3.2 which I was able
to use with the newer versions of SuSE linux. But alas, that came to an end ... almost ... as the newer
versions increasingly changed. The answer came from CTU Libraries in Czechoslovakia which I found via a
discussion site in a WebSearch. Their /ftp/pub
area contained some unique and interesting updates for any version of VMware. With these patches I have been
able to use VMware 3.2 all the way up to, and including, SuSE 9.2.
Now then, I'm not sure why I was chosen to be a tester but as I said above, I am
not going to turn down the offer cause I like to test out new stuff. The only 'problem' is that I can not
keep my current version of VMware in execution with this newest version. Which means that I am going to
have to make sure that everything is backed up so I can recover my old one when the new one quits working.
Which also means that this paragraph will be the last ... for a while ... via Homesite. I will have to
switch to BlueFish in Linux while I check out this VMware 5.0. At least till I get it into execution.
I have the neccessary files from my previous version saved and the installation process
of version 5 is supposed to remove the old one anyway. Which will be our first test. Will it properly remove the
||Results or Further Actions
||Obtained the VMware file.
||Examined the contents and saw that it will replace vmware-distrib if I unload it
in the same directry. Unless I change the name.
||un-tared the VMware file.
||A new vmware-distrib was created. Looked basically the same.
||Looked at install prog.
||Well, it is the same as before. In fact the Copyright date still says 1998.
||Execute the install.
||Right off the bat it shut down my 3.2 and then removed it.
||During Install does config.
||I had just previously executed a config on my 3.2 so the Linux kernel files should be in
proper shape for the config here.
||Even though it looks like the same install program, something got changed somewhere. I got
asked about the Compiler and the include files like normal for vmmon and it compiled and loaded
perfectly. The next question was not about compiling vmnet but I was asked if I wanted to keep
my old network settings. I said yes and it just compiled vmnet and then started vmware. I did
not get the question about accessing the host files. Which is good since I don't want their version
of smb loaded anyway.
||VMware is running
||According to qps, the new vmware is running.
||Creating a VM
||I use Win2k. I renamed the old win2kPro dir under vmware to win2kPro3.2. Now I will try to
setup a new win2kPro with this version 5. I haven't touched my .vmware dir with my license
and neither has the new install... yet.
||From Home dir did a /usr/bin/vmware
||Now then, this new VMware is supposed to work with the new 2.6 kernel so I should not need
||The first Workstation screen came up and it had a tips dialog that you can keep ... or not.
I'll leave it enabled for now... but closed it.
||The Main Screen
||We have three selections. Create a new VM, Create a Team or search for Virtual Machines and
select one. I am choosing the create new VM.
||Choice - Typical or Custom
||This try I am going to choose 'Typical'
||Select a Guest
||Well, they have looked over my machine and found that I was using Win2k. That is the first
choice they offer me.
||Here they get verbose. The dir used to be ~/vmware with ../win2kPro under it. Now it is a
long '~/Windows 2000 Professional' ... with spaces. Hmmmmm... don't like it but we'll try it.
||Now we get to the meat of the setup. My main purpose of VMware is, and always has been, a means
of using my favorite tools from Windows without having to dual-boot/re-boot. I have setup my
systems and directory structures such that both 'machines' have access. This has required
'Bridged Networking' and 'Host-Only Networking' with 'NAT'. I am offered all three options
on this screen or to not use a network connection at all. Nothing is said about accessing
the Host files which would invoke their Samba and mess things up.
Hmmmmm... radio buttons and I can only choose one! Not good.
||Here you can set your maximum disk size. It is supposed to start out small and grow as needed.
I have often wondered about that. This could lead to some bad fragmentation. They do allow you
to allocate all the space at this time, however. They even mention that this is a performance
improvement. Yep. It would be. No fragmentation.
||This is the next choice after the disk settings. After clicking on Finish I get a screen that
displays the status or character of my new machine. My HD is divided into 5 partions and I have
two DVD drives, one is writeable. VMware only detected one DVD and called it a CD-ROM. Nothing
was mentioned about my other partions. So far, nothing new. This is the way it has always worked
in detecting my hardware. Just a fancier screen.
||Clicked on 'Power on this virtual machine'
||Got presented with a little box that says Debuggin is enabled and it will probably make my
machine run slower. Debugging can not be disabled in this build. Rats. I wanted to see if it
was faster. Double rats... forgot to enter the serial number.
||Serial Entered - Power on again
||Houston - we have a problem. It won't boot from my CD. Sent off a note to VMware team.
||Embarrassing - Reply
||The problem was/is RAW reading in kernel 2.6, which I have... hmmmmm I had that when I was
using 3.2?? At any rate, there is a legacy check box in the Hardware settings for the VMware
CDs. I saw that before, thought about checking it... didn't and sent off the feedback. They
replied ... check the box for legacy support! Oh well, least they know I am doing something.
||Win2k - OS Install
||After the embarrassment, I put the Win2k CD in Drive one and Started the VM. It booted off the CD
and we are doing the installation. During this install, I do not see a mouse cursor for Win2k. I
can use Ctl/Alt and get my Linux cursor back. Hope this is not a mouse problem. Nope, it is not.
The Win2k VM machine just re-booted and we have a mouse.
||After Win2k re-boot
||Win2k goes through the device detection and setup ... just as it would on a new PC. These VMware
Virtual Machines are fantastic. As I have mentioned in reports about previous VMware experiences,
it is like have another machine in front of you. Every VMware box is just that ... another box.
It has supposedly setup Networking and other things. It is now requesting another re-boot.
||Well, it is not faster. In fact it looks a little slower. But they said cause of debug mode that
operations would probably be slower.
||First Win2k Screen
||Other than the usual bootup graphics, I was greeted with a Network setup wizard. I let it always
assume it is me (cause it is) and I don't use a password. Hate that other dialog box to get into
Windows. Especially since I am only using it as another application. Click on Finish.
||Alllrighty Now. We have a Win2k Desktop with the usual icons. However, I got a small Window that
is split vertically and has a new toolbar with some icons on it. A lot different from the 3.2
that I have been using. Course I am 2 versions behind.
||** Note **
||I had taken a break from this and serviced a customer. Plus I was waiting for the reply from
the VMware team. Pretty fast if you ask me. The reply was there when I finally got back to
my PC fun. But must go to my other job and finish playing later.
||This is a lot different. In version 3 I had to supply a configuration arg to the vmware
command. This would state which virtual machine was being executed. Here in version 5 you
just start up VMware and then pick the machine from a favorites list. Hmmmmm... that has
IE flavoring if ever I heard it.
||Allrighty now. The tools installation still requires the Guest OS to be in operation. So,
we fire up VMware and Power on Win2k. I got that small split screen again. Selected VM from
the top menu bar and then ... and then, well I couldn't remember so I clicked on VM again
and 'Install VMware Tools' was not listed. I cancelled the installation and it still was not
listed. Hmmmm... we'll shutdown VMware and look again... Guest off first. Ok. Killing the guest
was all that was needed... maybe. After shuting down the Guest I saw 'Install VMware Tools' in
the VM drop down again. It was grayed out but still listed. Started up the VM again and
'Install VMware Tools' was listed and selectable in the VM drop down. Note: Be patient.
The install is slow in starting up... and there isn't any indication that something is
happening. Not sure how much of this slowness is cause of the debug mode.
||VMware Tools - cont.
||We get a choice of Typical, Complete and Custom. Naturally, I checked custom cause it said
only Advanced Users should choose this one. I didn't see anything advanced about it and
from the looks of things the Advanced settings are probably what I will get when I select
typical. So, I am backing out and selecting typical. After clicking Install I saw all the
items that were in the Advanced being installed. So, for my particular setup, Typical and
Advanced are the same. Then naturally cause it is Windows you must re-boot.
||VMware Tools - Re-boot
||The screen is still small but the mouse doesn't stay in the Win2k. I can just move it out
of the Win2k box and it takes on the Linux cursor. However, going back to Win2k box is not
automatic, which is the way I usually set it. I must click in the Win2k box to get it active.
||To get a larger screen I do here in Version 5 the same as in the past. I right click on
the Win2k desktop and select properties from the menu. In the properties dialog I select
Settings. In that box I move the screen area to 1024x768. That has always worked for me
in both my 17inch and 19inch monitors. Doesn't fill the whole screen so I can still access
my Linux desktop.
||My concerns about the Network were needless. I couldn't select Host-Only or NAT along with
Bridged. I was only allowed one. I had selected Bridged. This was the correct choice. I can
access and modify the files on my Linux system that I have setup for this purpose. Samba, on
my Linux system, had been setup previously for this and I did not have to make any changes
to it. I can also access my Site on the Internet.
||I was able to install Version 5 on a SuSE Linux 9.2 system and then create a Virtual Win2k
machine. The Networking came right up and I didn't have to make any changes.
||CD/DVD ZIP Ops
||Ok now, my system has two DVD drives and one is a writer. (One of the first available on the
market, an HP dvd100i.) The other is a Pioneer DVD-116 DVD-ROM. In addition I have an IoMega
250MB zip drive. Only the DVD writer was detected and it was classified as a CD-ROM.
||To add another CD or DVD you must power off the VM. Stands to reason, you normally have to
do that with a physical box. We click on VM in the top toolbar and select Settings. You
are presented with a list of the Hardware that it thinks is on your machine. There are Add
and Remove buttons along the bottom of the list. Click on Add. A Hardware Wizzard appears
which device selections. One of them is DVD/CD-ROM drive, which we will select. Click Next
and we get a choice of a Physical Device or an ISO image. We want the physical device. Click
Next and we get to choose which device to add. From the drop down list I chose /dev/cdrom.
'Connect at Power On' was already chcked so I let it be. Clicked on Finish and the DVD/CD-ROM
appeared at the end of the device list. However, it had the wrong IDE setting. Hi-lighting the
device brings up the settings for it and we can change the IDE via a drop down list. I chose
IDE 1:1, which is what my second drive is.
||This can get confusing. If you start looking around your system you are going to see that your
CD or DVD drives can be listed as more than one device. In my case, the first DVD drive is
/dev/hdc which is also called cdrecorder via a link. The second DVD is /dev/hdd and it has two
other names via links, cdrom and dvd. This is the way they were setup by SuSE during the install.
Interestingly enough, the cdrecorder is not listed in the VMware drop downs for the physical devices.
Only the cdrom, hdc and hdd.
||Need to check these out after playing with the install. Added, removed and cancled. So now I'll
see if both can read a CD and a DVD. Well, this is interesting. Nothing will respond except the
mouse. However, that is just the cursor showing and moving. If I click on anything ... nothing
happens. I can not exit cleanly. Clicked on Reset and the VM did a re-boot. Well, it came back up
and crashed. Sending report to VMware Team. Interesting, Oooopss these guys must have a timeout
on the Crashes. It has come back to the Workstation screen while I am typing this. It says the
State is powered off. How-some-ever, Power On is NOT a choice. I was able to finally select
Quit from the File menu and exit VMware.
||I fired up VMware again. Looks ok except the Workstation window is larger. In fact it is the same
size as my Win2k window at my 1024x768 settings. The VMware work window is normally smaller. I do
have a Power on selection again. Interesting... after clicking on Power on the window immedialtely
went back to the small size it should have been. Got the 'It appears that other virtual machines are running.'
message. It also stated that some devices may not be available. There was not a message saying
that it was going to stop the other machine... like was in version 3.2. I decided to Cancel and
it went back to the Workstation menu. The window stayed small. The directory contained:
ctaylor@dusty-tr:~> lsd Windows\ 2000\ Professional/
564d03fb-fc14-8ba4-a6e7-26294b39f8ee.vmem Windows 2000 Professional-s001.vmdk
564d03fb-fc14-8ba4-a6e7-26294b39f8ee.vmem.WRITELOCK Windows 2000 Professional-s002.vmdk
nvram Windows 2000 Professional-s003.vmdk
vm-2004-12-27.24589.tgz Windows 2000 Professional.vmdk
vmware-0.log Windows 2000 Professional.vmdk.WRITELOCK
vmware-1.log Windows 2000 Professional.vmsd
vmware-2.log Windows 2000 Professional.vmx*
vmware-core.gz Windows 2000 Professional.vmx.WRITELOCK
Notice the write locks. This is what they had used before only there was only one. Ah, the last
one is cause I started up again. So I am only going to dump the first two and try again. Nope,
still won't start. Says in use already.
||31 Dec 04
||Well, I must set this aside. I do have some other things to do and its New Years. I'll get back
to this next year. 'Sides, I think I have screwed it up and I'll have to reload it anyway. I'm
going back to my 3.2 version for a few days.
||It still thinks a copy is running. Further investigation shows vmware-vmx in Zombie state.
Will kill the process.
||I'm a die hard. Got to see if I can get it running before quiting since I have found the
lockup problem. Wellll.. maybe not. Got the Win2k Desktop and now even the mouse won't work.
It is hosed. Back to setting it aside for a while. Will re-load and try again.
||Un-installing 5 and re-installing 3 was not a fun process. Version 3, which worked fine
before this testing of 5 started having problems. After a shutdown/re-boot it would say
that it was not configured... and during the boot the Networking did not get started.
Something somewhere keeps setting the not_configured flag in /etc/vmare.
||Looked thru the progs and found '/etc/init.d/vmware' is where the whole mess gets started
in the first place. Also found '/usr/bin/vmware /home/ctaylor/vmware/win2000Pro/win2000Pro.cfg'
was in execution somehow. So, we shut it down. Remove the 5.0 license. Dump the /usr/bin/vmware.
Dump the vmware.old.1 and restore the vmware.old.0 and the executing one. Removed the not_configured
flag. Created aliases to start and stop init vmware. (just because)
||More Bad Words!!
||The 'not_configured' flag still got set! However, the Networking got started ok. All I have to do
is dump the not_configured flag and I can run my VMware Win2k. This is still not good.
||The above screams were written in Homesite using VMware and Win2k. I have exited both and am
now using BlueFish to make these notes. I checked /etc/vmware and not_configured was not there.
So, we will shutdown/re-boot and see.
||After the shutdown/re-boot all came up and is working ... again. Once again I have a situation
where something got fixed and I am not totally sure what did it. The main items this last time
were: restore vmware.old.0 and killing that rogue vmware that was running. Hmmmm... also dumped
the 5.0 license. At any rate, for now I can shutdown/re-boot and things are 'normal'.
||Failed again. This time I checked things a little farther. In the VMware forum there were
others that have had the same problem. Naturally, I couldn't remeber the fixes cause I didn't
really pay them that much attention. Mine was working fine. Well, now I have to read them again
and I am incorporating one of the fixes. Since I was 'single stepping' up there in item 38, I
got the VMware services to start OK. In the forum, pbostley suggested a delay to wait for
vmnet0 to respond, with a timeout in case it didn't. Now because of my single stepping success
this sounded like a good, at least for now, fix.
This 'fix' (which I've changed 3 times!!) goes in /etc/init.d/vmware around line 895. ..right after
while [ $vHubNr -lt 256 ]; do
# wait for udev to respond...added 02 Jan 05
if [ $vHubNr -eq 0 ]; then
while [ ! -e /dev/vmnet0 ]; do
if [ $timeout++ == 40 ]; then
elif [ $vHubNr -eq 1 ]; then
while [ ! -e /dev/vmnet1 ]; do
if [ $timeout++ == 40 ]; then
elif [ $vHubNr -eq 8 ]; then
while [ ! -e /dev/vmnet8 ]; do
if [ $timeout++ == 40 ]; then
By the way, the 'not_configured' will get set at startup if the vmnet services don't get started.
So, it wasn't at shutdown but at startup.
||Well, vmnet1 got started but vmnet8 didn't. Seems strange that I didn't have all this trouble
until I loaded the Beta 5 in here. Must have installed something that didn't get uninstalled.
Not sure how to find it... but something is now slowing down vmnet. The answer may be in a
full total removal of everything VMware and load it again. You'll see that I changed vmnet0
to vmnet8 in the fix above.
||By delaying till vmnet8 got recognized, the Network items got loaded and I was able to run
my VMware Win2k with no more problems. Still awful fishy that it didn't present this problem
until after I tried VMware Beta 5. Another interesting part to this is that all the people
talking about this startup problem are using version 4 and above. Hmmmmm... I will get back to
this ... later. Got other things to do right now ... 03 Jan 05
||Now then... IF we are doing Networking: vmware_start_vmnet
Which in turn calls: vmware_load_module
Which in turn calls: /sbin/insmod -s -f "/lib/modules/`uname -r`/misc/$1.o" || exit 1
Which really doesn't tell me anything ... Dumping everything VMware and starting over!!
||This thing is really becomming a pain. I need all three when I operate so I put in the above
to try to ensure that I will get them. It appears to be working.
SUSE includes a kernel feature (that really should be in all dists)
that stores your kernel configuration as part of the kernel in compressed form. It can be found at
Doing a "make cloneconfig" from the kernel source dir basically preps the .config file for
building from the values found in /proc/config.gz.
Usually, this is followed by a "make prepare-all" which will then allow you to build
external modules without having to build the entire kernel source.
A big swallow.
I'm not going to buy this cause I don't have the coins with which to do so. However, I like them so I will evaluate
their latest version in order to provide some input if neccessary. I am going to re-do my whole system anyway. The Lord has
convicted me. I have some software that I shouldn't have. I am going to wipe my system and re-install it. If I can't produce
a bill of sale for a piece of software or show that it is free ... it will not get loaded on my system. #8. Though shalt not
Now then, what is needed to load up this latest version??? Actually, should be the same as the Beta version. So,
I just need to read my notes above and do it... after saving all my stuff.
||Results or Further Actions
||VMware workstation came up with a tip Window. No apparent problems.
||First click on Help and then Enter Serial Number... and then do it.
||Create New Mach
||A dialog is presented with a choice, Typical or Custom. I chose Typical.
||Must have examined my old configuration before it removed it. Came up with my previous selection
of Win2K. Naturally I agreed.
||Virt Mach Name
||Now we come with the "problem". At least it is in my viewpoint. This appears to
be the same as the Beta. It creates a long name with spaces in it. I personally don't care for
spaces in file or directory names. So I changed them from "Windows 2000 Professional" to
"Windows2000Pro". My 3.2 version was "win2000Pro".
||As in the Beta version you are offered choices and only can select one. I chose Bridged.
||Once again, for performance reasons, I am selecting the full allocation. You are allowed to
split the disk into 2GB files. I believe that this would be to handle BIOS's that have that
limit. Mine does not so I will not split the file.
||After clicking on Finish I get a VMware Worstation screen. This looks like a starting point.
As I mentioned in the Beta, or I think I did, they have made considerable changes since the version
that I am using. My HD is divided into 5 partions and I have two DVD drives, one is writeable.
VMware only detected one DVD and called it a CD-ROM. Nothing was mentioned about my other partions.
So far, nothing new. This is the way it has always worked in detecting my hardware. Just a fancier
screen. It found:
|Hard Disk*SCSI 0:0)
|CD-ROM 1 (IDE 1:0)
||Using drive /dev/cdrom
||Using drive /dev/fd0
||Using device /dev/dsp
||Now I still do not have a working machine setup. But before I install my Win2K I have to go to work.
I should be able to quit at this point and start again later. We'll see...
||Restarting the VMware workstation brings up the same screen as was there when I quit. There are
two places in which to fire up the Virtual Machine. One is in the commands list under the Windows2000Pro
tab and the other is in the tool bar across the top. Neither would fire up my virtual machine and boot
from the CD for Win2k. I had to change two settings in the configuration:
If you experience trouble in booting from your CD/DVD, check the settings and make sure that the proper
drive and nomenclature have been detected.
- Change /dev/cdrom to /dev/cdrecorder
- Check the Legacy Emulation box in CD-ROM configuration.
||Windows will Reboot on its own after it has copied some files. It will then continue the setup. During
this continuation there was a considerable fluctuation of the VMware Workstation window during the Detecting
Devices section. Looked out of control but evidently it was checking the screen. Finally settled out OK.
||Win2k is Up
||With the installation finished I can now fire up Win2k as a Virtual Machine within my SuSE 9.2 Linux System.
I have a 19 inch monitor so I setup Win2k for a 1024 x 768 screen. This is done in the Win2k display properties
AFTER installing VMware Tools.
||All is not well. I loose Linux Sound when I fire up Win2K inside VMware. This is strange cause
in my previous experiences, with 3.2, I wouldn't get sound until I fired up VMware/Win2K... ummmm
that is when I had a sound problem.
As an experiment, I used my Linux sound as Win2k was booting up. I got the message that the sound system
was busy and wuld not be used! Ok, this version is not sharing properly.
||Isn't this a Riot.
||I was reading through the VMware forum, and after seeing some of the experiences of others, I decided
to just fire up VMware Tools in my Win2K. I clicked on the Devices tab and saw that the box next to Audio
was not checked. I checked it and clicked on Apply. Guess what??? I now have sound in both systems. Linux
||Well, with this version 5 release, I must make my Linux sound active while VMware/Win2K is booting up. This
will cause an error message in VMware/Win2K about the sound and say it will not get loaded.
However, after Win2K is up and running I can click on the VMware tool icon, check the box next to
Audio in devices and ... whala! I have sound in both operations. Pain in the ...
I like VMware and I plan to continue using it. However, it will not be this newer version. To involved
and to many changes and ... I just don't have the coins. This will be great for someone that is still working but I
am ... sigh ... forcibly retired. Version 3.2 offers everything that I need.