Tip

VMware Tools, Windows 7 and random reboots

I’ve been having an issue with VMware Tools since I moved over to vSphere4.1. What happens is this, if you do a typical installation after a clean installation of Windows 7 (and I believe W2K8) then midway through the installation the VM is randomly and arbitrarily rebooted. Of course, on a busy day where you're doing far too many different things at once, it’s one that is easily missed. I was so convinced of this that I decided to install a fresh copy of Windows 7 and then snapshotted it before making any changes. I then video’d the entire experience. The reboot happens at around 4min and 40second. You might as well scroll to that point unless you want to watch the most tedious video on YouTube!

Anyway, I took the same VM. Reverted the snapshot, and decided to customize the installation of the VMware Tools. This time I was not including the SVGA Driver from the installation routine. Hey, presto VMware Tools install with an arbitrary reboot. It was thought that vSphere4.1 fixed problems with VMware Tools and this pesky SVGA driver.

    Requires Free Membership to View

But that doesn’t appear to be the case. I first picked up on this issue from the rather excellent blog of Jason Boche:

http://www.boche.net/blog/index.php/2010/03/28/windows-2008-r2-and-windows-7-on-vsphere/

I became concerned about it because of problems it introduced with vSphere4.0 U2 and PCoIP. A little bit later it gave me PanoLogic evaluation and some additional funkiness I would rather have lived without.

For my money, I think the KB article – http://kb.vmware.com/kb/1011709 which talks about not installing the SVGA driver still applies. Watch out for automatic updates and VUM upgrades, which might not read VMware KB Articles.

I think this issue is the real source of the deployment problems I’ve been having recently.

[UPDATE: Sadly, this is the case. And I still have cloning Win7 issues with vSphere4.1]

Anyway, I’m going to be experimenting with my new template, which doesn’t include the SVGA driver, over the next couple of days. I will soon know if this is related or unrelated.

Incidentally, I thought I might try a clone of a VM without VMware Tools and was surprised to find that Windows 7 requires VMware Tools in order to be cloned. It seems to be an issue with the Logical Volume Manager service. So, when installing VMware Tools, make sure you install it the right way, without a driver that can cause a random reboot! 

This was first published in August 2010

There are Comments. Add yours.

 
TIP: Want to include a code block in your comment? Use <pre> or <code> tags around the desired text. Ex: <code>insert code</code>

REGISTER or login:

Forgot Password?
By submitting you agree to receive email from TechTarget and its partners. If you reside outside of the United States, you consent to having your personal data transferred to and processed in the United States. Privacy
Sort by: OldestNewest

Forgot Password?

No problem! Submit your e-mail address below. We'll send you an email containing your password.

Your password has been sent to:

Disclaimer: Our Tips Exchange is a forum for you to share technical advice and expertise with your peers and to learn from other enterprise IT professionals. TechTarget provides the infrastructure to facilitate this sharing of information. However, we cannot guarantee the accuracy or validity of the material submitted. You agree that your use of the Ask The Expert services and your reliance on any questions, answers, information or other materials received through this Web site is at your own risk.