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steveroberts1
Contributor
Contributor

VM 12 Pro Locking Up / Freezing

Hello, I recently updated my 2017 iMac running 10.15 to 12.6.2, and concurrently, I upgraded VMW 11.5 Pro to 12.2.5 Pro. I'm running primarily two applications under a virtualized MacOS 10.8.2. For some reason, semi-regularly the VM locks up. The mouse moves on the screen, but I cannot access the applications. Sometimes, a suspension (pause button) and immediate resume of the VM returns normal operation. But, sometimes, the attempt to suspend the VM itself fails (progress bar shows but doesn't move), necessitating a force quit of VMW. Usually, this restores functionality. But, on occasion, a full host system restart is required. I never experienced this issue under 10.15 and VMW 11.5. Any suggestions on how to fix this? Thanks, SR
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ColoradoMarmot
Champion
Champion

What's the host and guest hardware configuration?  This sounds like you could be starving the host.  More modern MacOS systems, Big Sur somewhat, and Monterey and Ventura especially require substantially more resources than previous versions.

The old rule was no more than N-1 cores per individual guest, where N is the number of physical -not virtual or hyperthreaded cores on the host, and to leave 2 GB for the host OS.  On more recent OS's, I found that it's more like N-1 (but minimum of 2 dedicated to the host), and leaving 4GB across all guests for the host to ensure good performance.

Remember as well, MacOS always requires a minimum of 2 cores and 2GB (4 is preferred) as a guest.  So depending on your model, you may be fully loaded with a 2 core guest and a 2 core host (for a 4 core machine).

One other thought - do you have a fusion drive in that machine that hosts the virtual disk file?

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steveroberts1
Contributor
Contributor

Thanks for your response. I'm not sure I understand your question. I am running Monterey on a 2017 i7 iMac with 40GB. Are there some settings I should tweak on VMW? If so, where are they? Yes, virtual disk is hosted on a Fusion drive. Also, I've noticed that when the VM locks up, the upper right corner of the VM screen shows a "to unlock the mouse" warning. That is only visible when the VM is locked up.
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steveroberts1
Contributor
Contributor

Here is a picture of my current settings. What would you recommend?

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Technogeezer
Immortal
Immortal

If you open the Activity Monitor on the Mac while this is happening, what is it telling you about the CPU utilization of processes that are running?

- Paul (Technogeezer)
Editor of the Unofficial Fusion Companion Guides
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ColoradoMarmot
Champion
Champion

Ok, so unless you're doing something crazy on the host, there should be enough resources left.  The guest may need 4GB of ram to run well.

Fusion drives are definitely problematic for virtual machines.  As the operating system moves the virtual disk files back and forth between the spinning disk and ssd portions, there can be major performance impacts.  If you can get a high speed external SSD and move the drive there, you may find the problem just disappears.

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steveroberts1
Contributor
Contributor

Nothing crazy. This just seems to happen randomly.

I did up the memory to 4GB, but the lockups continue.

Regarding the fusion drive, that puzzling, as this system was running for several years under MacOS Catalina and VMW 11.5 Pro on the same fusion drive and never once locked up.

These problems began after upgrading VMW to 12.5 and MacOS to Monterey.

I do have an available external SSD, although I would not classify it as "high speed" as it is connected via USB.

Would that be worth trying?

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steveroberts1
Contributor
Contributor

Thanks for your inquiry. I could not see anything abnormal in Activity Monitor. See attached.

 

Activity_Monitor.png

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ColoradoMarmot
Champion
Champion

One other thought - have you run first aid on the drives?  The spinning disk may be starting to fail (they usually last 3-5 years depending on use).

But yes, if you have a USB 3.1 or 3.2 SSD, I'd try copying (no need to move - just copy) the VM over there and eliminate the variable.

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Technogeezer
Immortal
Immortal

I see you’re running Crashplan. Have you excluded the folder that contains your VMs from backup?

What is the memory pressure graph in the Memory tab of Activity Monitor indicating?

- Paul (Technogeezer)
Editor of the Unofficial Fusion Companion Guides
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steveroberts1
Contributor
Contributor

I don't think I have excluded Crashplan folders. Will do.

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steveroberts1
Contributor
Contributor

Will try copying the VM and report back.

 

Thanks very much for the ongoing assistance.

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ColoradoMarmot
Champion
Champion

Try crashplan first - path of least resistance 🙂

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steveroberts1
Contributor
Contributor

I disabled the folders from CrashPlan backup. That was not the problem.

See memory chart from Activity Monitor. Does this tell you anything?

Next up, moving the backups to SSD.

 

 

 

 

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steveroberts1
Contributor
Contributor

Activity_Monitor.png

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steveroberts1
Contributor
Contributor

As suggested, I copied the VM data to a SSD. Performance seems to be better, but I'm still getting the occasional "freeze" which requires suspending and then restarting the VM.

Any further thoughts?

 

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ColoradoMarmot
Champion
Champion

The last straws I have are:

1) if the VM is doing something with an external drive, and that drive has to spin up.

2) If you use other apps that leverage Electron, when one of those apps hangs, they all hang.  Slack is a good example - when it hangs, parallels hangs (and vice versa).  I recall that Fusion uses Electron for one part of the UX (the library)? so if that's open, and slack hangs, then that might cause it.

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steveroberts1
Contributor
Contributor

Thank you again, for your assistance.

The VM is not accessing another drive, AFAIK. I'm running just two apps and both are relatively self contained.

Electron is not on this system, to the best of my knowledge.

Again, the problem manifested only after updating my system from Catalina to Monterey and VMW from 11.5 to 12.2.5.

What are my options at this point?

 

 

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ColoradoMarmot
Champion
Champion

one total last idea - create a new user on the host and try running the VM from there.  Maybe there's something in that user profile that's causing it.

Short of that, I'm out of ideas.  OSX Guests are problematic because of the lack of 3d support.

 

Oh, one other last thought - make sure side channel protections are disabled in the VM settings.

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steveroberts1
Contributor
Contributor

I'll also note that when the VM becomes unresponsive, I get the "to release mouse..." notification in the upper right screen. The mouse is not locked to the screen and the key combination does nothing when pressed.

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